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Giving Youth A Voice

BANGLADESH
YOUTH SURVEY 2011
Elvira Graner
Fatema Samina Yasmin
Syeda Salina Aziz
October 2012


Giving Youth A Voice
BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
Elvira Graner
Fatema Samina Yasmin
Syeda Salina Aziz
October 2012
Giving Youth A Voice
BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
Insttute of Governance Studies, BRAC University
Dhaka, Bangladesh
October 2012
ISBN : 978-984-33-5791-5
Price : BDT 650
USD 16
Table of Contents
1.1 The Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011 an Introduction 2
1.2 Youth Surveys and Giving Youth A Voice 4
1.3 Aims and Objective of the Bangladesh Youth Survey 6
1.4 The Bangladesh Youth Survey Team and Methodology 7
1.5 Executive Summary 10
2 Youth in Bangladesh - Core Policies and Demographic Features 15
2.1 Governing Youth in Bangladesh - An Introduction 16
2.2 Governing Youth in Bangladesh - A Brief Summary of Youth Policies 17
2.3 Bangladeshi Youth - A Brief Demographic Profile 20
2.4 Bangladeshi Youth - A Brief Socio-Economic Profile 24
3 Governing Education - (Re-)Assessing Policies and Achievements 27
3.1 Governing Education - An Introduction 28
3.2 Translating Global Education Policies into National Policies 29
3.3 Bangladeshi Youth and Their Educational Profiles 31
3.4 Assessing the Importance of Education 35
3.5 Assessing the Education Policy - A Call for Better Trained Teachers 36
3.6 Strengthening Education Governance - (Re)-Considering Policies 37
4 Employment and Vocational Training 39
4.1 Employment and Vocational Training - An Introduction 40
4.2 National Policies for Vocational Training and Skill Development 41
4.3 Young People and their Integration into the Labour Market 42
4.4 Young People and their Vocational Trainings and Skills 47
4.5 Assessing the Vocational Training Policy - A Call for Public Private Partnership 48
4.6 Vocational Training and Labour Markets Some Policy Recommendations 49
5 Bangladeshs Young Citizens 51
5.1 Bangladeshs Young Citizens - An Introduction 52
5.2 Youth as Politically Active Citizens 52
5.3 Assessing Fair Elections and Deciding Who to Vote For 55
5.4 Defining Democracy 57
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BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011 i
5.5 Media of Learning about the State 58
5.6 Performance of Institutions 60
5.7 Perceptions about Corruption and Crime 61
5.8 Assessing the Current Government 64
6 The Digital Generation - Bangladeshs (Dis-)Connected Youth 65
6.1 The Digital Generation - An Introduction 66
6.2 The Governments Digital Bangladesh Policy 66
6.3 Connected Youth The Vast Spread of Mobile Phones 68
6.4 Disconnected Youth The Un-Digital Generation of Bangladesh 71
6.5 Assessing IT Literacy A Modest Picture 72
6.6 Digital Bangladesh Political Ambitions versus Actual Patterns 74
7 Youth as Family and Community Members 75
7.1 Youth and Family - An Introduction 76
7.2 The High Importance of Family and Community 76
7.3 The Importance of Religion 79
7.4 Life Cycle Planning 81
7.5 Selecting a Spouse 83
7.6 Youth and their Leisure Activities 85
7.7 Feeling of Independence 87
7.8 Acceptance of Social Change 88
8 Challenges and Opportunities 91
8.1 Challenges and Opportunities Introduction 92
8.2 Discussing Major Challenges 92
8.3 Assessing (Dis-)Advantages 95
8.4 What the State Could Do - Refining Youth Policies 95
8.5 Youth and their Optimism about the Future 97
8.6 The Bangladesh Youth Survey - Some Afterthoughts 97
Bibliography 99
Annex 108
Selected Tables 108
Questionnaires (English and Bangla) 110
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List of Figures
Figure 2.1 Budget allocations for different ministries 18
Figure 2.2 Demographic profile of youth from the sample survey (by age group and gender) 21
Figure 2.3 Demographic profile of getting married (by gender) 21
Figure 2.4 Demographic profile of getting married for women (district-level) 22
Figure 2.5 Demographic profile of having children (by gender) 23
Figure 2.6 Demographic profile of having children (for Chittagong & Rajshahi ) 23
Figure 2.7 Demographic profile of having children (by district) 23
Figure 2.8 Income distribution among the households 24
Figure 2.9 Income quintiles and locational distributions 24
Figure 2.10 Combined incomes and levels of food sufficiency 25
Figure 2.11 Level of incomes and self-assessment of class status 25
Figure 2.12 Ownership of TV sets (district level) 26
Figure 2.13 Ownership of core assets (by localities) 26
Figure 2.14 Ownership of core assets (by income groups) 26
Figure 3.1 Targets for Net Enrolment Rates under various policies 30
Figure 3.2 Budget allocations to the two Education Ministries (MoE and MoPME) 30
Figure 3.3 Student population among the youth (by gender) 32
Figure 3.4 Student population among the 16-year olds (by income groups) 32
Figure 3.5 Non-enrolment in primary and secondary education (by age group) 33
Figure 3.6 Non-enrolment in higher (secondary) education (by age group) 33
Figure 3.7 Age of drop-out from school (by income group) 34
Figure 3.8 NERs among the currently 6 to 18-year olds (n = 9191) 34
Figure 3.9 Student and non-student population aged 12 to 14 (district-level) 35
Figure 3.10 Important aspects of education 36
Figure 3.11 Assessing the education policy 37
Figure 3.12 Priorities for educational policies 37
Figure 4.1 Annual budgets for various ministries 42
Figure 4.2 Experience of regular work (based on gender and age groups) 43
Figure 4.3 Experience (or perception) of unemployment 43
Figure 4.4 Sectoral employment of the youth (based on gender) 44
Figure 4.5 Incomes for current employment (by gender) 44
Figure 4.6 Incomes for first-ever work/employment (by gender) 44
Figure 4.7 Age of starting first paid/unpaid work (district level) 45
Figure 4.8 Preferred type of work (based on gender and age groups) 46
Figure 4.9 Actual access to current employment 46
Figure 4.10 Youth who have participated in V&T Training (by locality and income groups) 47
Figure 4.11 Youth who have participated in V&T Training (by locality and age group) 47
Figure 4.12 Assessing the need for vocational training 48
Figure 4.13 Priorities for vocational training policies 48
Figure 5.1 Age composition of young registered (non-)voters 53
Figure 5.2 Age composition and election participation of young voters 54
Figure 5.3 Registration of young voters (20 and older, district-level) 54
Figure 5.4 Forms of participation of students in politics 55
Figure 5.5 Participation in youth politics and student politics (by age) 55
Figure 5.6 Criteria for defining fair elections 56
Figure 5.7 Criteria for deciding who to vote for (levels of agreement) 57
Figure 5.8 Criteria for deciding who to vote for (ranked according to importance) 57
Figure 5.9 Defining democracy 58
Figure 5.10 Media of learning about the state 59
Figure 5.11 Media of learning about the state (by gender and social groups) 61
Figure 5.12 (Dis) satisfaction with key institutions 61
Figure 5.13 (Dis-) satisfaction regarding MPs (by gender and locality) 61
Figure 5.14 (Dis-) satisfaction regarding the police (district-level) 62
Figure 5.15 Assessing the most severe crimes 62
Figure 5.16 Assessing corruption (disaggregated by income group) 63
Figure 5.17 Who should handle justice? 63
Figure 5.18 How to reduce crime 64
Figure 5.19 Assessing the current and past governments 64
Figure 6.1 Availability of mobile phones (by age) 69
Figure 6.2 Availability of mobile phones (by income group) 69
Figure 6.3 Availability of mobile phones (district-level) 70
Figure 6.4 Monthly costs for mobile phones (by age) 71
Figure 6.5 Monthly costs for mobile phones (by income groups) 71
Figure 6.6 Internet users (disaggregated by age) 72
Figure 6.7 Internet users (disaggregated by income quintiles) 72
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Figure 6.8 Self-assessment of English language skills 73
Figure 6.9 Self-assessment of computer skills 73
Figure 7.1 Important relations within the family 76
Figure 7.2 Important role of parents 77
Figure 7.3 Reasons why communities are important 78
Figure 7.4 In time of need whose advice is sought 79
Figure 7.5 Importance of religion (among Muslims) 80
Figure 7.6 Importance of religious practices (among non-Muslim communities) 80
Figure 7.7 Ideal and actual ages for completing education 82
Figure 7.8 Ideal and actual ages for staritng working 82
Figure 7.9 Ideal and actual ages for getting married 82
Figure 7.10 Ideal and actual ages for having children 84
Figure 7.11 Criteria for selecting a spouse 84
Figure 7.12 Independence to select future spouse (by age and gender) 86
Figure 7.13 Importance of leisure activities 86
Figure 7.14 Ranking of leisure activities 88
Figure 7.15 Youth and their perceptions about being independent 88
Figure 7.16 Acceptance of Social Change 89
Figure 7.17 Acceptance of Social Change - should women work ? (by gender) 89
Figure 8.1 Major challenges seen by young people (ranked) 93
Figure 8.2 Major challenges seen by young people (based on open-ended questions) 93
Figure 8.3 Assessing their own situation compared to other youth 95
Figure 8.4 Assessing their own situation compared to the rural poor 95
Figure 8.5 What could the state do ? 96
Figure 8.6 Third priorities for youth policies (by gender) 97
Figure 8.7 Assessing their parents standard of living 98
Figure 8.8 Assessing their own standard of living after two years 98
ACRONYMS
BBS Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics
BDHS Bangladesh Demographic and Health Survey
BTEB Bangladesh Technical Education Board
CSDS Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, New Delhi
CTG Caretaker Government
DFA Dakar Framework of Action (for Education)
DHS Demographic and HealthSurvey (GOB and Macro International)
DYD Department of Youth Development
EFA Education for All
FGD Focus group discussions
GBS Governance Barometer Survey
GOB Government of Bangladesh
HIES Household Income and Expenditure Survey (GOB/BBS)
HSC Higher Secondary School Certifcate (after class XII)
IGS Institute of Governance Studies (BRAC University, Dhaka)
ILO International Labour Organization
KIIs Key Informant Interviews
KPIs Key Performance Indicators
MDGs Millennium Development Goals (based on the UN Declaration 2000)
MICS Multiple Integrated Cluster Survey (unicef 2006, 2009)
MOE Ministry of Education
MOPME Ministry of Primary and Mass Education
MOYS Ministry of Youth and Sports
NER Net Enrollment Rates (for education)
NGOs Non-Government Organisations
NSDC National Skill Development Council
PEDP Primary Education Development Programme
PPP Private-Public Partnership
PSUs Primary Sampling Units
SOG State of Governance Report
SPARC Social Policy Analysis and Research Centre, Colombo University
SSC Secondary School Certifcate (after class X)
UNDP United Nations Development Programme
UNFPA United Nations Population Fund
UNICEF United Nations International Childrens (Emergency) Fund
TVET Technical & Vocational Education and Training
WFP World Food Programme
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PREFACE
The Institute of Governance Studies (IGS), BRAC University has been investigating various facets of governance
ever since its establishment in 2005, and one of the issues which has consistently kept emerging as a matter
of both concern and huge potential is the youthful nature of Bangladeshs population. Youth represents
one-third of the population of Bangladesh and it is expected to grow to more than 60 million by 2020. The
striking and overwhelming impression of the face of Bangladesh is its youthfulness. The question that has
exercised researchers mind at IGS is how, if at all, policy-makers are factoring-in the youth dimension in the
governance equation? Keeping that central issue in mind many other supplementary questions have also
been raised. This self-questioning of Bangladeshs youth has coincided with the massive political upheaval in
the Arab States and, in particular, the participation of the youth in that movement. This external development
has injected a strong sense of concern and urgency and has prompted IGS to launch this study on youth.
Giving Youth a Voice, the first ever nationwide survey on youth, was started in 2011. The main findings of the
report were released to the media in mid August, prior to the International Youth Day. The final version, as
contained in this report, provides an in-depth understanding of young peoples perception and experience
of politics and society in Bangladesh. The nationwide survey, with a sample size of 6,575, related to such core
policies as education, skill development, labour market, information technology. The survey also explored the
role of youth within the state, society, community and family. The IGS team has undertaken a thorough and
diligent analysis of the data, and this report presents the findings and analysis. I am confident that this report
can positively contribute to the future designing and implementing of youth-related policies in Bangladesh.
It is incontrovertible that the present demography of Bangladesh is heavily tilted towards youth, and the
next couple of decades will witness an opening of a window of opportunity for Bangladesh. I hope it will
not be an exaggeration to state that the future of Bangladesh will very much depend on how successfully
we, as a nation, engage our young men and women in the different spheres of nation building. The report is
also explicitly sending out a strong warning to our present leadership failure to engage the youth will bring
unforeseen crisis to the state of Bangladesh. It is time for all of us to act.
I thank the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and UNDPs Democratic Governance Cluster, as
well as the Affiliated Network of Social Accountability South Asia Region, and the International Development
Research Centres Think Tank Initiative for their generous support and encouragement, which has resulted
in the release of this report. I also acknowledge the unrelenting effort of the core team, Fatema Samina
Yasmin and Syeda Salina Aziz, and led by Dr. Elvira Graner, who produced this report, supported by the IGS
research team, as well as admin. and finance team. Finally, IGS is indebted to many scholars inside and outside
Bangladesh for their guidance and contributions, particularly Prof. Siri Hettige from Colombo University.

Manzoor Hasan
Institutional Advisor
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Giving Youth A Voice -
Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011
Pathuakhali xi/2010
1.1 The Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011 An Introduction
Understanding young people and their ideas about politics and social justice is a major challenge not only
for policy makers and development practitioners but also for academics. By their sheer numbers, this group
is a core constituency for policy makers and service providers. The provision of services, part icularly to this
group, is crucial in order to support them in setting up their lives, both pro fessional and personal. This has
been demonstrated quite vividly worldwide during the past two years all across Northern Africa and the Arab
region. Yet, in spite of this relevance, there are only a few countrywide studies that specifically concentrate on
young people. At the same time, many of these focus on demographic (and health) characteristics whereas
political aspects are usually dealt with rather eclectically, if at all. One extreme example is the youth survey
that was carried out in Egypt in 2008. As one of their core findings they state that Youth in Egypt are politically
disengaged (Egyptian Cabinet/IDSC et al. 2010a, 27).
One study that has addressed youth in detail is the World Banks World Development Report 2007, as the
sub-title indicates, Development and the Next Generation (World Bank/IBRD 2006). When addressing the
relevance of this report, the authors argue that missed opportunities to invest in and prepare this generation
will be extremely costly to reverse, both for young people and for society (ibid., 26). From a human rights and
governance angle, we would add that it is not only the costs that are detrimental, but the overall violation
of fundamental human rights for a social group that is both numerically substantial and socio-politically of
utmost importance. The World Bank report focuses on five transitional phases that characterise youth, namely
learning for work and life, going to work, growing up healthy and forming families. In addition, they also
include a chapter on exercizing citizenship. At the same time, when analysing global youth policies, the
report criticises that youth policies often fail young people (ibid. 2006, 26 and 214 ff ).
In South Asia, a few surveys have been carried out over the past years, some of them (co-) funded by political
foundations. Quite an active group among these scholars is the Dept. of Sociology at Colombo University,
who have already carried out two youth surveys, one in 1999 and one in 2009. In India, the Centre for the
Study of Developing Societies (CSDS) has provided a publication on Indian Youth in a Transforming World
(2009), based on their 2008 survey. In addition, there are several other projects that aim at tapping into issues
that are crucial to youth. One of these initiatives has been set up by the British Council in both Bangladesh
and Pakistan. Taking up the project title The Next Generation, the core findings of these two studies have
been published in booklets by the British Council Dhaka (2009) and British Council Islamabad (2009). For
Bangladesh, BRACs Research and Evaluation Division carried out a survey back in 2006, under the title Voices
of Youth.
While the British Council aims at providing a snapshot (ibid. 2009, 2) the Institute of Governance Studies (IGS)
of BRAC University, has now taken up the challenge to set up and carry out the first-ever full scale national
Youth Survey in Bangladesh. Overall, our project on Giving Youth A Voice has three closely interrelated
components. One is to conceptualise and carry out a systematic survey among young people in Bangladesh,
the Bangladesh Youth Survey (BYS) 2011. The second component is to strengthen governance for youth-
related issues, by supporting a national-level policy dialogue with core stakeholders in this field. This includes
policy makers, development partners and practitioners, as well as academics, who are engaged in supporting
and strengthening youth policies. The third component is to set up and strengthen a network among the core
stakeholders at the South Asian regional level.
2 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
The Bangladesh Youth Survey (BYS) has been guided by a few key considerations. One was the idea that it
should cover the standard sets of topics dealt with in other youth surveys. This considers the main life cycle
and transitional phases, as discussed in the World Bank Report and in other reports from the South Asian
region, in order to allow for a moderate level of cross-regional comparisons. In addition, we also felt the need
to allow for some degree of comparison with IGS previous public opinion surveys about the performance of
the government and its core entities (institutions) from the State of Governance Project. These have been
carried out since 2007, and published as a chapter of the State of Governance Reports (IGS 2007 and 2008),
and last years Governance Barometer Survey (Aziz and Graner 2011).
Overall, the BYS includes a standard set of demographic features (age composition, education, participation
in labour markets) and family composition. For the actual youth survey, the crucial life cycle phases and
transitions are addressed, namely education, marriage and having children, and inclusion into the labour
market. From a governance angle, we briefly summarise the major national policies and legal regulations, and
compare the current achievements to policy targets. In addition to these core policies we have also included
an analysis of the current Information Technology (IT) policy (Digital Bangladesh). The chapters with a
direct link to national policies also include a brief assessment of the opinions of youth about some of the
core components of the respective policies. In addition, there are the regular up-dates about assessing the
performance of the government, in regard to overall performance as well as critical issues such as corruption,
as studied for the State of Governance Project.
Interestingly, the title of our study was selected prior to coming across the one carried out by BRAC. Giving
a voice had also been an issue for gender studies (Imam 2012 and the World Banks 2008 From Whispers to
Voices).For us, the title is quite pragmatic and comprehensive. On the one hand, we aim at placing youth and
youth policies more prominently into the minds of policy makers and development partners, a need that has
already been expressed by several others (see BRAC 2006, Quraishi et al. 2004). On the other hand, we also
aim at pointing out that there are more aspects to youth than just the one as a demographic category, an
argument also made by Kinjal during our joint regional conference in Colombo (ibid. 2012). Thus, for us, youth
is a comprehensive category, not only in terms of their demographic share of the population. For the fine
tuning of our survey, and later on also for receiving comprehensive feed back for our analyses, we have also
formed a unique network with scholars from Colombo University and with other academics, policy makers
and development partners in the region (see below).
One core aspect for our study has been the vast disparities and divisions within the category of youth.
The term includes urban upper and middle class youth in their teens and twenties, with access to world
class educational institutions, with ambitions, and capabilities, for global leadership (see also British Council
Dhaka 2009). Yet, at the same time, the term also includes those who complete their education at ages
perhaps even younger than their teens, to be followed by an integration into the domestic or informal
economy, either as unpaid family labour or un(der)paid wage labour. These disparities also have a gender
dimension, and, in addition, a regional (or more specifically a locational and district-level) one. To analyse
these and to bring these disparities to light is a core endeavour of this project. Only then is it possible to
engage in a meaningful, and fruitful, policy dialogue where stakeholders can join hands to counterbalance
these grave forms of exclusion and contribute to inclusive democracy. By doing so, we aim at contributing
to giving all youth the chances in life that they deserve, irrespective of their gender and family background.
Giving Youth A Voice - Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011 3
1.2 Youth Surveys and Giving Youth A Voice
In the World Development Report, the World Bank defines youth by including a quote from Fussell Youth
is a transitional phase from childhood to adulthood when young people, through a process of intense
physiological, psychological, social, and economic change, gradually come to be recognized - and to
recognize themselves - as adults (ibid. 2006, quoted from World Bank/IBRD 2006a, 27). Overall, they argue
that the demographic transition is creating an enormous opportunity to invest more in their human capital
(ibid., 26). Similar arguments are also brought forward by unicef in their report on Adolescence. An Age of
Opportunity (ibid. 2011a). From a governance and policy angle, youth is certainly a most crucial and critical
phase of life. It implies a new social generation which needs to be integrated into society as citizens, knowing
about their rights and duties. For doing so, both guardians and the government need to critically support
them in optimising their life chances. In terms of age definition, we follow the one common for most South
Asian countries, comprising all 15 to 30-year olds.
Overall, most studies on youth point out how unique a period youth is. Thus, youth is usually described as a
time of vast personal and educational developments, a time of opportunity and a time of being sheltered by
parents or guardians. Some authors, and elite urban professionals based in development organisations and
(other) NGOs in particular, tend to refer to youth in rather euphemistic and at times even eulogistic language.
In Bangladeshs British Council Study The Next Generation, Majumder for instance compares young people
to full flowers (ibid. 2010, 21) and Kabir claims that youth is the most beautiful time (ibid. 2010, 12). These
descriptions of youth also seem to have been a guiding principle of the Daily Stars Anniversary Supplement
on Bangladesh. Young and Future (February 2012a and 2012b). This includes a series of short profiles about
successful young personalities, from across the country and across several spheres of life. Such stories are
certainly important to point out, and to maintain a spirit of optimism about the future potential of the country,
where youth play a quintessential role (see also British Council Dhaka 2009).
At the same time, these are predominantly, if not exclusively, about the middle and upper class. Yet, there
are also quite different stories about youth, and these are the vast groups who are being neglected, by either
parents, or the state, or even worst case scenario by both. The lack of inclusion, or even more or less open
and pronounced exclusion, takes place in many spheres, and education is an early and quite obvious one.
Closely linked to it are the difficulties in accessing the labour market and receiving (moderately) fair wages.
This is a critical issue in many sectors, whether domestic workers, agricultural or industrial workers, and
at times even in NGOs. Ideally, these young citizens, rather than the first ones, should be at the centre of
policy attention, whether from the government or from NGOs and development partners. On the part of the
government, this also implies the need for the provision of substantial and specifically targeted budgets, as
well as mechanisms for monitoring and evaluating whether or not these critical groups are being reached.
Only when this happens, will the vast numbers of left-outs among youth get the chances they deserve, as
citizens of equal status but with, at present, highly unequal opportunities.
For academics, the first step of such a comprehensive process of strengthening governance for youth policies
is to gain an in-depth understanding of the core issues that are of interest and concern to young people. For
doing so, there is a need for a sound methodology to tap into this knowledge, by deciding which questions to
ask and how best to capture the answers, particularly from those groups with only a moderately low level of
education (and discursive knowledge). Of equal importance is a profound understanding of how to analyse
these vast data sets and how to visualise these for an audience with limited statistical and visual literacy. Of
core interest for our analyses was to address and understand disparities. Overall, regional disparities are quite
4 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
pronounced, as has been demonstrated vividly in our last years Governance Barometer Survey, as well as
any other (sub-) district level analyses (as for instance unicefs Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys of 2006 and
2009). As done last year, we will elaborate on gender disparities, whenever they are significant.
In addition, we also aim at providing two further types of disparity analyses, namely socio-economic and age
groups. The latter has been guided by our understanding that there are vast disparities within this group of
15 to 30 year olds (see also Hettige and Mayer 2002 and deSouza et al. 2009). While youth might seem to be a
rather monolithic entity to outsiders, it is, at the same time, a period where life changes quite rapidly. In order
to capture these changes we have based our analyses on more specific sub-groups of either two, three or five-
year age groups (i.e. 15/16, 15-18, and 15-20 onwards, respectively). We also felt the need to undertake some
form of social analysis and to elaborate on the vast social disparities. For doing so, we have divided the youth
into income quintiles, based on self-reported incomes. These might lack the precision that we had hoped
for, yet it is at least a starting point for future analytical refinement (for methodology see chapter 1.4, below).
In addition to the actual survey, the second aim of the project Giving Youth A Voice is to support and
strengthen a policy process for good governance. This aims at addressing youth as a most crucial entity of
need for support. Thus, our Giving Youth A Voice project aims at supporting a policy dialogue, that includes
policy makers, development partners and academics, at both the national and regional level. For the national
network, this includes those ministries engaged in youth affairs, such as the Ministry of Education (MOE)
and the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education (MOPME), as well as the actual Ministry of Youth and Sports,
particularly the Department for Youth Development (DYD). From the development partners, this network
includes UNDPs Democratic Governance Cluster, and the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation
(SDC) in Dhaka. In addition, other organisations that are quite active in the field are our colleagues from
BRACs Research and Evaluation Division, the British Council and NGOs, such as Action Aid. In addition to
this Summary Report we aim at providing a few policy briefs that address policy areas that are of particular
relevance to youth, and to discuss these in policy dialogues.
The third component of this project was to set up a regional network in South Asia. The rationale for doing
so was, first of all, to tap into the knowledge base of colleagues who have undertaken similar studies in the
region. As mentioned above, there are a few research institutions that have been engaged in youth surveys, in
the South Asian region, as well as in the Arab region. Their publications have been quite important in inspiring
us to undertake a similar exercise, and also to fine-tune our ideas about the specific topics to cover. In Europe,
one country where youth surveys have a long-standing tradition is Germany. There, interestingly, the Shell
Company has initiated, and constantly kept up an interest in supporting regular studies from 1952 onwards.
Since then, youth surveys have been carried out at more or less regular intervals of 3 to 5 years, the last one
in 2010 (see Albert 2012).
In setting up this network, we had the rather unique opportunity to organise a planning workshop in
November 2011 in Colombo, at Colombo University. This workshop could be held during the critical phase
of conceptualising and refining our survey methodology, and the comments and inputs from our colleagues
have been extremely fruitful and timely. Participants included our academic advisor from Colombo University,
Prof. Siri Hettige, and the members from his team, Sunjay Kumar and the team from the Centre for the
Study of Developing Societies (CSDS) in New Delhi, as well as Deepak Thapa from the Social Science Baha in
Kathmandu and Marcel Schepp from the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung in New Delhi.
Giving Youth A Voice - Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011 5
After completing our survey, we again had the tremendous opportunity to co-organise a joint regional
conference with the team from Colombo Universitys Social Policy Research and Analysis Centre (SPARC), in
March 2012. The aim of the conference was to bring together international and regional scholars (from India,
Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Pakistan, and Germany), as well as policy makers and development
partners with an interest in analysing youth from the vantage point of social and political science. This again
included scholars from the Dept. of Sociology at Colombo University and from CSDS in New Delhi, as well as
other scholars from the Open University in Colombo, Lucknow University, the Social Science Baha in Nepal,
and from the universities of Bielefeld and Heidelberg in Germany. In addition, we could invite participants
from cultural and development cooperation, including young professionals from UNDP in Pakistan and
Bangladesh, as well as from unicef (Bhutan) and colleagues from the British Council in Islamabad. From the
policy makers, there were participants from Bhutan and Sri Lanka, and the latter also included a delegation
from the Youth Parliament. For our team, this was again a most fruitful opportunity to discuss some of the core
results from the BYS.
The survey itself was co-funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and UNDPs
Democratic Governance Cluster. Other partners who supported us were the Affiliated Network of Social
Accountability, South Asia Region (ANSA) and the Canadian International Development Research Center
(IDRC) through their Think Tank Initiative (TTI) grant to IGS. In supporting the regional network, the Konrad
Adenauer Foundation in New Delhi was quite instrumental, as they (co-)funded both the planning workshop
in November 2011 and the academic Regional Conference in March 2012, the latter together with SDC
Colombo and ANSA South Asia.
1.3 Aims and Objectives of the Bangladesh Youth Survey
The main objective of the IGS Bangladesh Youth Survey (BYS) is to provide an in-depth understanding of
young peoples ideas about politics and social justice. This includes how they see their roles vis-a-vis the state,
society/community and their families. This also addresses their assessments of the core policies of relevance
for youth, such as education, skill development and access to labour markets. One policy of indirect relevance
is that relating to Information Technology (IT). While the latter does not directly focus on young people, youth
are, partly implicitly and at times even explicitly, a major target group. Some studies even characterise the
current youth as the digital generation (such as Montgomery et al. 2004) a hypothesis that we strongly
question from our BYS data. We also address youth as young citizens, investigating their ideas about political
life.
To meet this objective, we have designed a representational perception survey, based on a sample survey of
6,575 youth, from across the country (see chapter 1.4, below). The core analytical contribution of our study
will be a detailed disaggregation in regard to gender, locality (as well as district-level), social strata (based on
self-reported income groups) and age groups. The gender and social analyses can provide crucial information
about disparities in access and also different assessments among different social groups. In addition, we
have also further disaggregated age groups into more specific categories of pre-adults (and pre-voters) and
adults, in order to gain a better understanding of the substantial changes in perception that occur during
this crucial phase in life. In addition, the regional analysis can then identify localities in the country where the
implementation of policies is lagging behind and where the performance of local service providers, whether
government or private sector/NGOs, needs to be strengthened.
6 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
The main outputs of our survey include this comprehensive report and a series of academic papers, such as the
ones presented during our joint regional conference in Colombo. A third type of output, particularly addressed
to policy makers, will be some policy papers that summarise the key findings for the most prominent policies,
namely education, vocational training and access to labour markets, as well as IT. All of these publications will
provide crucial feedback from the perspective of an important constituency. In addition, the wider network
established along with this project, among scholars, policy makers and development partners in the South
Asian region, will, ideally, contribute to discussion and strengthening of youth policies at the South Asian
regional level, as well. Hopefully, within the next few years, this will also inspire similar studies in the region,
and possibly even worldwide.
Overall, the survey and its disaggregated analyses will be an important contribution to the assessment of
youth policies and other social policies. By probing into young peoples assessments of achievements, or the
lack of them, we aim at providing country-wide evidence for policy makers and policy implementers. Such an
analysis can strengthen national- as well as district-level planning, by indicating in which districts in particular
the implementation of specific policies and/or projects is lagging behind. In addition, this will also provide
evidence for identifying both gender and social exclusion for core policies. By doing so, we will also make
re commend ations for strengthening policies and democratic governance for young people. Thus, our study
will also be a crucial building block to revise indicators for measuring core policies, both at the national and
international levels, such as MDGs.
As an expected outcome, more broadly, we see the Bangladesh Youth Survey and this report as a means to
strengthen the position of young people. Thus, the findings will hopefully contribute to designing further
action and policies in terms of strengthening the democratic governance of youth, in close partnership
between the government and the development partners. Again, the regional, gender and social analyses aim
at providing evidence for better regional and social targeting. At the local level this also needs to reconsider
the institutional set up at the upazilla and union parishad levels and the service provisions by the respective
line ministries. When considering sustain ability, we also wish to contribute to putting in place a network of
core stakeholders from the govern ment, development partners and national/ local NGOs and youth associ-
ations. For the latter in particular, a comprehensive involvement and a democratic re pre sent at ion across the
country and gender/social groups, will be a core requirement and indicator for success.
1.4 The Bangladesh Youth Survey Team and Methodology
The Bangladesh Youth Survey is again an in-house product of IGS. For quality assurance we have involved
several development partners and networks (SDC, UNDP, the Affiliated Network of Social Accountability/ South
Asia) in setting up the research and in discussing and disseminating its findings. Our team at IGS includes one
national and one international academic advisor. The national advisor is Barrister Manzoor Hasan, the previous
director and current advisor of IGS. As an advisor he was also involved in the youth study done by the British
Council in 2008, The Next Generation and in supporting the network Bangladesh Young Leadership Council.
The international academic advisor is Prof. Siri Hettige who was the team leader at Colombo University when
doing the Sri Lankan Youth Surveys in 1999 and in 2009.
The team leader of the BYS has been Dr. Elvira Graner from Heidelberg University (Germany), who is currently
based at IGS as a Research Fellow. She has co-authored the Governance Barometer Survey 2010 and was also
a team member of Heidelberg University when analysing and mapping the Sri Lankan Youth Survey in 1999.
Giving Youth A Voice - Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011 7
The core team at IGS has also included Syeda Salina Aziz, who co-authored the Govern ance Barometer Survey,
as well as Fatema Samina Yasmin, who was a member of the Education Team for the Anti-Corruption Plan for
the Dutch Embassy in 2010. For academic guidance we have substantially profited from the two network
meetings held at Colombo University, namely the Planning Workshop in November 2011 and the Joint
Regional Conference in March 2012. Both were rather unique opportunities to discuss both our methodology
and questionnaire, as well as our core findings with a highly knowledgable group of scholars, policy makers
and development partners.
The survey itself was designed by the IGS core group, in consultation with the larger IGS research team, and
sub-contracted to Nielsen Bangladesh (see below). In addition to the survey, the methodology also included
substantial field work in a few sample districts, in the form of Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) and Key
Informant Interviews (KIIs). These were carried out prior to and along with the actual survey. A first round of
FGDs was carried out in Jamalpur and Sherpur during October 2011. During the survey (in December 2011)
we also undertook field work in Sylhet and Moulvi Bazar, as well as Comilla, Chittagong and in the Chittagong
Hill Tracts. The teams from IGS included the core BYS team, as well as Ekram Hossain, Mahboob Elahi Akhter,
Rigan Chakma and Nazmul Arifeen, and two local assistants.
The actual Bangladesh Youth Survey (BYS) was conducted among 6,575 households by, overall, 70 enumerators
and within roughly four weeks during December 2011. From a population of approximately 140 - 160 million
(the first according to current GOB data; GOB/BBS 2011), this implies a confidence interval of about 1.5 per
cent and with 95 per cent confidence level. Based on overall demographic data in terms of gender proportions
and urbanisation rates, the sample was based on a 70/30 rural - urban and 50/50 male - female proportion. As
regional disaggregations are of high importance for our analyses we requested the survey company to spread
their sample size across the entire country, a methodology different from last years Governance Barometer
Survey, when only 33 districts were covered. We would argue that this has improved the representation of
excluded groups quite significantly (see for instance chapter 3.3, below).
For sampling, a multi-stage stratified cluster sampling framework was used. The sample size for the quantitative
survey was calculated using a statistical formula for each district to provide district level indicators and gender
disaggregated information. Population data was obtained from the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS), i.e.
following the population proportion from the last Population Census in 2011. In order to calculate the sample
size, we took 50 per cent as P value, which yields a maximum of sample size. The error margin (e) is set at 5
per cent (i.e. a confidence interval of 95 per cent). Based on this formula, the sample size was estimated as
4,740, and rounded as 4,800. As the sample needed to be distributed across all 64 districts, and also provide
a proportional representation of male - female and urban - rural, we needed to increase it. In order to obtain
an adequate sample for each bifurcation, we decided to select at least 27 for urban and 63 for rural areas. This
resulted in an overall sample size of 6,575 youth.
While covering the 64 districts, in each of the districts the lowest administrative unit in rural/urban areas
(mouzas for rural and mahallas for urban area) were considered as Primary Sampling Units (PSUs). In a next
step, one upazilla was selected at random for each district. In each of these upazillas, one urban area was
randomly selected within the pourashava area. In a second step, one rural area was randomly selected within
the same upazilla, which was outside the pourashava area. We are quite aware that this sampling technique
has a slight urban bias, as it does not capture the voices of youth in areas that are more distant from urban
centres. Yet, in terms of logistics it has already been challenging (and costly) to spread the sample across the
entire country. Each of the selected PSUs was assessed for their number of population. In a next step, the
8 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
mahallas were then divided into blocks, ideally in such a way that each of the blocks contained about 120-
150 households. Among these, one block was selected randomly and all the households in these blocks were
listed using a quick-listing format.
From the quick listing, all the households with young people (aged 15-30) were considered eligible for
the survey. From these eligible households, every third household/ holding/ respondent was selected for
interview. Failure cases were replaced by the next household/holding/respondent of the selected one, or
otherwise the next third was selected. In some cases where more than one household lived in buildings or
apartments, the blocks were segmented on the basis of holdings, so that each block contained 70 holdings. In
these cases, one block was selected randomly. From each of the selected blocks of 70 holdings, 25 households
were selected, following our systematic random sampling. For each holding, one household was considered
for the study. Again, failure cases of holdings were replaced by the next holding to the selected one, or the
next to next, depending on availability. In cases of a limited number of holdings in a selected block, the
selected blocks were extended within the same area. In those households where more than one young
person was found, one respondent was chosen at random. In the case of non-response (for reasons such as
unwillingness, unavailability or other) the desired sample size has covered with replacement. Overall, the
survey is now based on a total of 128 PSUs.
As stated above, the questionnaire was designed by the IGS research team during autumn 2011, in English.
After being discussed with our academic advisor, it was translated and (re-translated) into Bangla and a pre-
testing of the questionnaire was carried out in mid November. In addition, we had the opportunity to discuss
our draft questionnaire during a regional planning workshop in Colombo (see above) and incorporate the
discussions and suggestions made by our colleagues from Sri Lanka, India and Nepal. The survey itself was
conducted by Nielsen Bangladesh. As a first step, the company conducted a one-week training course, which
consisted of both class room training and field trials. After this training, the skills of the interviewers were
evaluated and they were allowed to join the field teams, if found satisfactory.
In terms of quality control, quality checks were made by supervisors on a daily basis. Data entry was supervised
in Dhaka by a team of statisticians and continuous supervision during the listing and data collection period
was carried out, in order to provide consistent and high-quality data. Supervision was carried out at all stages
of the survey, i.e. during data collection, scrutiny and data entry. Spot checks and back checks were made
by the supervisors and field executives. For proper monitoring of fieldwork and ensuring the quality of data
collected, emphasis was placed on the scrutiny of schedules by the supervisors, on a daily basis. Observations
of some of the interviews were carried out by the field staff. Spot checks were carried out to verify the accuracy
of information collected and visits were made by research professionals to monitor fieldwork and provide
technical guidance to field staff. About 20 per cent of spot checks were carried out during the data collection.
The first step of editing was done in the field and, in addition, office editing of all completed schedules was
carried out by trained office editors as per the data entry programme. This included coding of open ended
questions, identification details and consistency checks before starting the data entry process. Data entry was
carried out under the supervision of a Senior Operation Executive and core team members. FoxPro software
package was used for entering the data. In the next step, this was converted to an SPSS file for analysis.
Computer based checks were done and, based on the errors generated, inconsistencies were removed and
the data base was cleaned.
The survey itself followed a structured questionnaire, and this contained thematic sections as well as
Giving Youth A Voice - Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011 9
a household roster with demographic and economic information. The latter included all members of the
households, and their demographic (age, gender, education) and socio-economic profile (such as main
occupation). This section was followed by the actual youth survey. As mentioned above, this concentrated on
the three spheres of relevance to young people, the family, the community and the state. The latter section
included policies for education, vocational training and access to labour markets, as well as the current IT
policy, Digital Bangladesh.
Many of the questions were based on perceptions and assessments. For measuring these, a four point
scaling system was used, such as for agreement (highly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree and
highly disagree) or importance (highly important, and so forth). This scaling follows the one from last years
Governance Barometer Survey but is different from the surveys done previously for the State of Governance
Reports (2007 and 2008). There, we applied a five-tier (or three-tier) classification. Our experience was that,
usually, the largest group chose the middle field and thus we now purposively aim at avoiding this, from last
year onwards. Thus, we have deliberately excluded the average option in order to motivate people to come
up with a more specific response. At the same time, this slightly jeopardises comparability with our previous
surveys.
Overall, one of our major challenges was that respondents tended to agree (or even highly agree) on most of
the issues addressed. This could be due to quite a number of reasons, including what Chambers has captured
as one of the six biases (ibid. 1983, 13ff ). In social settings, his core argument is that, where there are vast
social (and educational) disparities between interview partners - i.e. those who conduct the interview and
those being interviewed - their interactions might be characterised by a mixture of politeness and intimidy
(ibid., 21), and thus answers might reflect what the latter expect that their interviewers might want to hear.
In addition, we would argue that it is also quite crucial that the level of what Giddens has termed discursive
consciousness or knowledge is quite low (see ibid. 1995). This term captures what actors are able to say, or to
give verbal expression to about social conditions, including [..] their own action (ibid. 1984, 374). In societies
where overall education is low, a majority of the population might not be in a position to express their ideas,
particularly vis-a-visforeigners (from Dhaka and elsewhere).
A second major challenge was to drastically shorten the questionnaire. While reading other surveys and
conceptualising and designing ours, we, somehow naturally, kept including new topics and more nuanced
modes of capturing and assessing these. Yet, during pre-testing we found that it was much too comprehensive,
as some of the interviews had taken nearly two hours. As this was vastly beyond what is both acceptable and
feasible we needed to substantially shorten it. Overall, this task was quite a painful one, as it was a process of
substantial discussions and compromises. Thus, most of the lengthier questions, such as those about ranking
of priorities and open-ended ones, needed to be deleted. In addition, one set of questions that we entirely
deleted from the BYS was those addressing health. We strongly regret this and it was certainly not due to the
lack of relevance - but rather since we thought that this could, and certainly should, deserve a study on its
own.
1.5 Executive Summary
Based on national level data, children and youth have accounted for approximately 65.7 per cent of the
population in 2001. Among those, 26.3 per cent are youth between the age group 15 and 30 (based on GOB/
10 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics 2003). The Bangladesh Youth Survey (BYS) was conducted among 6,575 young
persons across all 64 districts and on a representational basis. The gender proportion was nearly half and half
(3296 men and 3279 women) and a rural - urban proportion was 70 to 30. Among the latter, 4.7 per cent of the
sample was conducted in city corporations, as we thought that this might provide interesting insights into
social change at these localities. Our analyses of the BYS data base is mainly based on gender, locality (and
district), age groups, and on income groups, following self-reported income (see below).
The core demographic data indicate that among the youth, the majority of the women have already been
married (64 per cent), as opposed to only 28 per cent among the men. Women marry much earlier, while the
majority of the 19/20 year old women were already married, this proportion was only reached among the
25/26 year old men. Similarly, more than half of the 18 year old women already had their first child, while
this proportion was only 18 per cent among men. At the same time, these ages differ significantly from what
youth consider as ideal (see below). Their monthly household incomes range from 2500 to 150,000 Taka.
When forming quintiles for our analysis, the lowest income group has monthly incomes of less than 5,000
Taka, the second lowest group of 5000 to 7,500 Taka, and the middle income group of 7,500 to 10,000 Taka.
For the two highest income groups we have selected 15,000 Taka as the demarcation line between higher and
highest income groups.
In regard to education, currently 42 per cent of the men and 27.8 of the women were still enrolled. On the
other hand, 5.6 per cent have never been to school, and an additional 5 per cent have not reached class V.
Among all youth, 27 per cent have not studied in class 8 and more than 40 per cent have not reached class 10.
Locational disparities for those who never attended school are astonishingly low and are only slightly lower
in rural areas (5.8 per cent, as compared to 5.3 per cent in urban areas and 5.5 per cent in city corporations).
There is a promising trend that rates of non-attendance have declined considerably over the past decade
within primary education, from more than 10 per cent among the older group to about 5 per cent among the
youngest group. Similarly, while only 60 per cent among the older group had reached class VIII this proportion
has increased significantly over the past 15 years, to more than 80 per cent. Yet, while annual rates of about
1.3 per cent are promisingly high, these rates are not likely to increase in a linear mode. Overall, a considerably
high share of youth from lower income groups (and hard to reach ones) has remained out of school, until
today. Thus, a social analysis based on (self reported) incomes gives rise to serious concerns. Among the
lowest two income quintiles rates of never-attendance stood at 10.4 and 8.1 per cent, respectively.
Integration into the labour market is quite low, and characterised by vast gender disparities. Overall, only 32.4
per cent of all youth in the BYS sample have any experience of work, whether paid or unpaid. Currently, only
27.6 per cent are engaged in paid work or employment (a total of 1,820 persons). At the same time, only 3
per cent classified themselves as unemployed (in addition to 5 per cent where no answer was given). Gender
disparities are highly pronounced, while it is about 4 per cent among men it is merely 2 per cent among
women. Among the latter, an extremely large group has classified themselves as housewives. As marriage
takes place at a rather early age this is also the case among women of younger age groups. At the same time,
disparities at different localities are low, but there is, as expected, a strong pattern according to age groups.
Among the youngest age group (15 to 20) less than 20 per cent are currently engaged in regular work or
employment but rates increase to nearly 45 per cent for the oldest age group (25-30). At the same time,
integration into the labour market takes place at extremely early ages for many youth. In a few districts 35
to 50 per cent have started work before reaching the age of 15. When asked for job preferences, the public
Giving Youth A Voice - Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011 11
sector has an extremely high attraction (for more than 50 per cent). At the same time, this decreases quite
substantially along age groups, from more than 60 per cent to less than 30 per cent. For getting a job, families
play a crucial role, particularly for younger groups, whereas friends as mediators are more important among
older youth and in city corporations. Labour migration is also an option for many, both men and women.
Destinations are partly Dhaka or elsewhere in Bangladesh, and for men, the Arab region is a vital option.
Participation in vocational training has remained quite low, at an average of 7 per cent only. This share is
considerably higher among men (at 8.3 versus 5.6 per cent) and in city corporations (10.9 per cent, versus 8.5
and 6.1 per cent in other urban and rural areas). Vocational training is highest among the 20-25 age group
(9.1 per cent), and this primarily reflects that average ages of participating in these trainings are 17 to 22.
Among lower income groups, vocational training is less frequent (5.3 per cent). Yet, this might be a circular
conclusion, as those who have undergone vocational trainings are likely to fall into higher income groups.
When assessing vocational training policies, a strong feed back was the need to integrate vocational training
and placements in companies.
When defining democracy, a wide majority stated that elections are a core parameter. At the same time,
there are substantial gaps in getting registered as voters. Overall, a majority of more than 70 per cent of all
eligible youth (18-30) was registered as voters, and registration was even higher among women (nearly 74
versus 69 per cent, respectively). Among the 18 to 20 year-olds the majority was not yet registered, and even
among those aged 21 only about two thirds were registered, although they could have participated in the
last election. While gender disparities are quite low, regional disparities are much more pronounced.
When assessing the performance of core public institutions, there is strong support for the military and local
government institutions, whereas dissatisfaction is highest with the police and Members of Parliament (MPs).
In regard to corruption perception, again the police and the judiciary are perceived as the two most corrupt
entities. Regarding crime, the top five crimes are murder, drug and alcohol abuse, dowry and personal property
crimes, and all of these are reported as very severe by more than 80 per cent. The perception of crime also
has a strong gender pattern. Crimes such as eve-teasing, dowry, and sexual violence are more important for
women. When asked about the major sources of information regarding the state, youth have pointed out
the importance of newspaper and TV news. When asked about their satisfaction with the performance of the
current and previous governments, the two politically elected governments, both the current Awami League
and the past BNP, were ranked lower than the last care taker government (CTG).
In regard to the recent developments for Digital Bangladesh there is quite a mixed picture. On the one
hand, there are rather promising developments in regard to the availability of mobile phones. This has spread
quite rapidly to about 85 per cent of all youth, a substantial increase even when compared to our last years
Governance Barometer Survey (at 70 per cent) or the British Councils Next Generation (73 per cent). Regional
disparities, as well as social ones, have considerably declined. At the same time, actual utilisation is extremely
low, and many young people re-charge their phones with less than 150 Taka per month. In addition, mobile
phones are often mainly used for giving each other missed calls. At the same time, computer utilisation
and internet utilisation have remained dismally low, and highly socially exclusive as they are mainly used
by higher income groups only. As only less than 10 per cent of youth utilise these means, we would overall
strongly question the notion of a digital generation, and rather characterise them as disconnected youth.

Bangladeshi youth have a strong connectivity to their families and communities. Families are in charge
of deciding about most aspects of life, including the selection of a spouse. When in need, families rather
than friends or anyone else are approached. When asked about life cycle planning, there are vast disparities
12 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
between actual ages and what youth consider as ideal. For completing their education and getting married,
both are given at about 25, and slightly lower for women. For asking about their leisure activities, we provided
a list of fourteen activities, including reading books and newspapers, as well as religious activities. While
many activities, other than sports, had a high level of agreement the ranking that was done as a second step
showed a highly concentrated pattern. Religion and reading novels had an amasingly high level of priority,
irrespective of gender and other parameters.
For a better understanding of young peoples ideas about social change, we have asked them about the
acceptance of a few controversial issues. While gender equality, working women, friendship with the
opposite gender, and family planning seem to have a general consensus, some others face an extremely
strong opposition. The latter include divorce and marriage without the consent of the parents. This was also
confirmed when asking them how independent they felt in terms of decision making. Most young people
felt quite independent in regard to decisions about choosing employment, how to spend money, choosing
friends or exercising mobility. On the other hand, choosing their future spouse showed the highest level of
dependence.
When asked about the major challenges for young people, a large number of answers from the open ended
question concentrated on unemployment, illiteracy, and lack of money and poverty. At the same time, the
ranking of challenges has confirmed this, in addition to concerns about maintaing good health and getting
quality education. From this perspective it is of no surprise that when asked about what the state could do to
support young people, a large majority (of more than 5,000 among the 6,575 respondents) opted for improve
the quality of education as a first priority. Other aspects were to create more job opportunites for the youth,
although this was mainly given as a second priority.
Giving Youth A Voice - Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011 13
14 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
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Youth in Bangladesh
Core Policies and Demographic Features
Dhaka xii/2011
16 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
2.1 Governing Youth in Bangladesh An Introduction
For documenting the importance attributed to youth there are a number of core indicators. The national Youth
Policy 2003 argues that the youth are important for the future of the country and national development
(GOB 2003, 1). As is the case in many countries, the policy document also points out that youth have played a
very constructive role in the historical movements and the independence of Bangladesh (ibid., 2). This is also
mentioned in the Constitution, which addresses the welfare and development of youth in different articles. It
aims at developing the young generations into anefficient and productive workforce (GOB 1974, 5).
One fundamental task, on the part of the government, is to define youth. In the South Asian region, various
governments have provided several alternative definitions. In Bangladesh, the Youth Policy defines youth as
citizens aged between 18 and 35. While Sri Lankan youth is defined as 15-30 year olds, India has a broader
definition, of 15 to 34 (CSDS 2012, 12). The Nepalese government has recently introduced an even more
extended version, comprising all those aged 18 to 40 year olds (GON 2009, 15). In their introduction to the
Indian Youth Survey, deSouza et al. have asked the blank question of would age be the sole criteria, or personal
and social responsibility, or autonomy from the family, or marital status, or individuality of personality, or
preferences with respect to lifestyle, etc. (ibid. 2009, xv). Similarly, Kinjal in her paper presented during the
Giving Youth A Voice Conference, argued for the need to conceptualise Youth beyond a demographic
category (ibid. 2012, 1).
A second fundamental, and much more comprehensive task is to conceptualise specific policies that aim at
addressing and supporting youth. These policies and the respective programmes should be designed and,
above all, implemented in order to focus on the needs of young people, and comprising all sections of society,
particularly those in need of state support. An aspect closely related to this is also the institutional (i.e. the
intra- and inter-ministerial) arrangements and linkages, for implementing these policies and for co-ordinating
the various activities. Needless to say, this also needs to address linkages with other core stakeholders, such as
civil society, NGOs, the private sector, and development partners. Thirdly, there are the specifics about overall
budgets and intra-ministerial and programme budget allocations. The latter, we would argue, is a most critical
indicator for assessing the role and priority, or the lack of it, given to youth.
The first part of this chapter will concentrate on youth and child policies. In addition to this, three policies that
are of particular relevance for youth will be dealt with in more detail in later chapters. This includes education
(chapter 3.2, below), vocational training and employment (chapter 4.2, below), and the IT policy (chapter
6.2, below). The second part of this chapter will then briefly provide some of the core demographic features
of the youth, as the main results from our Bangladesh Youth Survey and the complementary focus group
discussions (FGDs). This includes the overall demographic composition in terms of age, gender, and marriage
status, as well as fertility data (chapter 2.3). Thirdly, we will provide a brief glimpse of the socio-economic
profiles of youth, as this will be the basis for our social disparity analyses (chapter 2.4). The latter also includes
food security, as monetary incomes might capture the situation of agricultural households.
Overall, our core argument is the need to strengthen governance in fields that are of core importance for
youth, such as education, vocational training and labour market integration. For education, UNESCO in their
2010 Global Monitoring Report (GMR) for EFA has placed gover nance at centre stage, as epitomised in the title
Overcoming inequality: why governance matters. Their core argument is that governance define[s] who
sets priorities and makes decisions in key areas (ibid. 2010, 119). Similarly, Transparency International in their
Education Watch Africa, defines good governance as ensuring that the necessary re sources [..] are managed
in a transparent and accountable manner (ibid. 2010). From our vantage point, good governance also refers
to strengthening mechanisms of social inclusion in youth policies, and to setting in place mechanisms of
monitoring and evaluation, in order to assess these policies, and the achievements.
2.2 Governing Youth in Bangladesh A Brief Introduction to Youth Policies
In Bangladesh, affairs related to youth fall within the responsibility of the Ministry of Youth and Sports, a
classical combination, even in Western countries (including Germany). Prior to its establishment in 1984 sports
were administered by the Ministry of Sports and Culture, while the youth sector fell within the responsibility
of the Ministry of Labour and Manpower. The administrative set-up of the Ministry reflects this dual function.
A crucial department is the Department of Youth Development (DYD), which predated the ministry and was
created in December 1981. As a core responsibility, the Ministry of Youth and Sports states that it has been
dispensing its services for the development of the youth section of the population. At the same time, it looks
after the upliftment of games and sports in the country (www.moysports.gov.bd). For those aged under 18,
the Ministry of Children and Women Affairs is the core administrative regulatory body (see below).
When commenting on the definition of youth, as 18 to 35 year olds, Quarishi et al. in their report for UNFPA,
have argued that it is regrettable that adolescents (aged 10-18) are being left out (ibid. 2004, 22). They even
term this definition retrograde (ibid.) and argue that it is not just a question of semantics. It means that age
groups outside this definition will be ineligible for any programme [..] (ibid.). Generally, we strongly support
this argument. At the same time, we also feel the need to point out that overall, the predominant focus by
policy makers reflects a rather functionalistic approach. This aims at preparing the youth, and including them,
in the national (or international) labour market. While this is understandable, given the scarce resources,
youth policies also need to (re-) consider broader issues that are of relevance for this age group, other than
education, sports, and (reproductive) health. Generally, in many countries, budget allocations tend to be
channeled to these specific sub-sectors, rather than youth issues in more general terms.
The joint ministry states its vision and mission on their website, and these reflect the dual functions. As
their Vision they see Capable youth with employment for nation-building activities; dynamic sports
for recreation and health of the nation (www.moysports.gov.bd/ missionandvision.html). Similarly, their
Mission is specified as [..] to transform the youth into efficient human resources through training and credit
to ensure their participation in socio-economic development and other nation-building activities (ibid.). For
sports, they state that Our goal is to attain world-class standard in sports through development of sports
infrastructure as well as fostering of real talents with all sorts of facilities home and abroad (ibid.). Overall, the
Ministrys website lists 22 major activities, and while the first 8 refer to youth and their development, the vast
part deals with sports, starting off with the Promotion and development of games and sports (ibid.), also
including the exchange of sports teams with foreign countries and even pensions to sportsmen.
The budget is not specified on the website. Instead there is a vague reference that it is funded by the Ministry
of Finance (ibid.). Quraishi et al. in their analysis state, somewhat ironically, that in terms of funding priority,
it is observed that only 0.30 per cent of the total budget was directly allocated to the Department of Youth
Development though the youth constitute nearly 42 per cent of the total population (ibid. 2004, 7). Similarly,
the annual budget speech of the Finance Minister also provides extremely limited information about either
activities or budgets (GOB/Ministry of Finance 2010, 52ff ). Limited to less than one page and all together
two paragraphs (of less than 300 words), the main information is about a national level training scheme. This
National Service was launched in Kurigram district during the fiscal year 2010/11. For further information
Core Policies and Demographic Features 17
18 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
they state that This is basically a training program and is intended to generate temporary employment for
the youth [..]. Through this count[r]ywide program, our aim is to turn the unemployed and educated youth
into skilled workforce through employment or self-employment as well as ensure their contribution in nation
building activities (ibid., 53). As a target for the fiscal year 2010/11 they aim at 79,452 persons who will be
trained and provided with temporary employment (ibid.).
As is often the case, the larger proportion of this section of the budget speech deals with sports, and this is
likely to reflect overall priorities, and budget allocations. The budget speech points out to its importance,
arguing that sports is also one of the key means for developing peoples creativity in a country. It is essential
to practice and nurture these two pursuits for improving physical capacity and fitness as well as developing
intelligence and intellect (ibid.). They also point out the successful organisation of the South Asian Games,
and of course the International Cricket Cup, and the success of Bangladeshi sports persons. From a gender
and socio-economic perspective, it would be quite interesting to analyse participation by gender and low-
income groups in all these programmes, and thus to investigate gender and social inclusion, or possibly
rather exclusion. In terms of overall budget allocations, the Ministry of Youth and Sports has a moderate level
of overall funds, although the development proportion is comparatively high (see Figure 2.1).
Figure 2.1 Annual budget for diferent ministries (for 2010/11; GOB/MOF 2010)
One of the core functions of the Ministry, as any other ministry, is to draft policies and legislations. The
National Youth Policy was formulated during the last BNP government and was publicly announced in 2003.
Until today, it has remained a draft, posted on the website of the Ministry of Youth and Sports. Whether or
not it will ever be adopted as an Act remains a crucial question. More generally, the National Youth Policy
starts off by addressing the need for creating a sense of patriotism and respect among the youth towards the
Constitution, history, heritage and the country. It intends to create appropriate opportunities of employment,
self-employment and entrepreneurship for the youth. It also addresses the need to create opportunities for
women to participate in mainstream development and decision making processes. It plans to take steps to
create leadership qualities among the youth. Acknowledging the advancement of the global IT sector, it also
aims at expanding IT facilities for the youth, an aspect that is also of relevance for the current governments
Digital Bangladesh Policy (GOB 2011), an issue we will take up in a later chapter (see chapter 6.2, below).

0 5000 10000 15000 20000
Ministry of Labour and Employment
Min.of Expatriates' Welfare & Overseas Employment
Ministry of Cultural Afairs
Ministry of Information
Ministry of Social Welfare
Min.of Science and Information & CT
Ministry of Women and Children Afairs
Ministry of Youth and Sports
[in million Taka]
recurrent
development
Core Policies and Demographic Features 19
The National Youth Policy provides a long list of factors that contribute to the youth problems, such as existing
poor practical education, incompletion of formal education (dropout), negative attitude towards supply of
labour, different types of unemployment, involvement of youths in antisocial and immoral activities including
AIDS and drug addiction, unawareness in health care, scarcity of credit and less scope for undertaking self-
employment project, backwardness in technology, inefficiency in IT, absence of favorable environment in the
fields of sports and games and sound recreations, lack of sense of responsibility to family and society, moral
degradation etc. (ibid., 2). It also argues that it is essential to emphasise the opinions of the youth regarding
these problems. Yet, in spite of this, the policy does not elaborate on how to incorporate young peoples views
and opinions. It argues for the need to provide youth with basic needs, work, rest and recreation and the
opportunity to participate in decision making processes.
At the same time, the policy does provide a detailed list of the responsibilities of the youth about how
they should work for the betterment of the country. This includes to have respect on national unity, social
solidarity, general consensus, tolerance and law and order, to strengthen themselves for self-dependence
and creativity by having regular education, training and other fruitful exercises, to enrich and preserve all
historical and cultural heritage, to create good mentality to pay respect and good services to women, children,
elders, the handicaped and neglected people, to work as ambassadors of national, regional and international
development, to ascertain the rights and interests of future generation by dint of present performance, to
play pivotal role in creating a wealthy society free of terrorism, social injustice, exploitation, corruption and
crime (ibid., 2-3). The National Youth Policy also provides several recommendations on how to improve the
lives of Bangladeshi youth and how they can be incorporated into the mainstream development process. In
terms of strengthening gender policies, the policy gives adequate attention to young women. It intends to
give them equal opportunities in all decision making processes including education, health [..] and cultural
amenities of life (ibid., 3). In addition, it suggests taking necessary steps to protect women from all kinds of
violation.
In terms of institutional (or rather organisational), changes, the policy recommends the establishment of two
bodies in order to enhance the development of the youth. One is to establish a research and statistics centre
within the Ministrys Department of Youth Development, and secondly a non-government central body to
maintain coordination among voluntary youth organisations. More importantly, the National Youth Policy
recommends the formation of a high powered committee, headed by the Prime Minister, for the smooth
implementation of the policy. In addition, it suggests that an inter-ministerial committee with representatives
from the youth community will implement and monitor the policy. Again, it places the Ministry of Youth and
Sports for being responsible for implementing, monitoring and reviewing the national policy.
For children and adolescents under the age of 18, the Ministry of Women and Childrens Affairs is in charge
of drafting policies and legislation. In addition, crucial sectoral ministries are the Ministry of Education (MOE)
and the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education (MOPME), and their policies will be dealt with later (see
chapter 3.2, below). The core policy document for children is the Child Policy 2011, a revised up-date from the
1994 Policy. The new Policy starts by stating that children are the foundation of nation building. Recognising
their importance, Article 28 (4) of the Constitution stresses the rights of the child, with emphasis on the need
to ensure free and mandatory primary education. The Child Law was developed in 1974 in order to ensure
the overall security and rights of children. At the global level, Bangladesh became one of the first signatory
countries of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in 1990.
The current Child Policy also elaborates on the success story of the Awami League government in achieving
the UN Millennium Award 2010 for reducing maternal and child mortality. It points out that Bangladesh was
able to achieve MDG-3 by ensuring gender equality in primary level of education (an aspect that we will
critically discuss in chapter 3, below). The need for a revised policy is emphasised by arguing that the world
has faced many changes and developments, new demands have been created for advancement as well as
the recommendations of CRC Committee (GOB/Ministry of Women and Childrens Affairs 2011, 4). The policy
is to serve as a long term vision for building up the present and future of children and it is to be considered
with attention during any policy formulation, planning, implementation and budget preparation. At the same
time, we would argue that it is a gross shortcoming not to address any potential links and overlaps to the
Youth Policy.

While the Youth Policy is quite comprehensive, it does not provide specific guidelines on how the various
committees will be formed, or how the committees could function independently while the Ministry of Youth
and Sports is in charge of implementing and monitoring the policy. It is also quite silent about the way the
representatives from youth will be chosen. We would argue that one flaw of the policy is that it does not
specify how the proposed steps can be put into practice. One piece of evidence to support our argument,
is the policy that skill development and self-employment opportunities will be extended throughout the
country. These facilities are to be provided by both government and non-government bodies. The policy
points out the steps, such as establishing training institutes, which are expected to provide quality training
and options for income generation. Yet, it does not place any specific government agency in charge of these
duties.
Overall, the Youth Policy also wants to ensure the participation of youth in all decision making processes, for
the overall development of the country. The policy mentions that registered youth organisations will be given
financial support to implement youth advocacy. Yet again, there is no further specification about the selection
criteria for these youth organisations that could receive such support. Similarly, in regard to employment,
the policies and actions needed to create employment, particularly for youth, are praiseworthy. At the same
time, the policy does not mention how these comprehensive steps should be implemented nor does it give
any directive for budget allocations. Overall, we would argue that the National Youth Policy needs quite
substantial revisions, in order to make it practical.
2.3 Bangladeshi Youth - A Brief Demographic Profile
In order to have a better understanding of youth, some analysis of the core demographic and socio-economic
composition is essential. In our survey, these data have been collected in two different sections of the
questionnaire. The first part included a complete household roster, of the entire family members and their
household income/s (n = 32,546 family members). This follows the methodology of our last years Governance
Barometer Survey (GBS). The second and core part is the actual Bangladesh Youth Survey (BYS), and this has
included interviews with 6,575 youth. This section will briefly summarise the core data in terms of the major
demographic life cycle parameters, such as marriage status and fertility. Other important demographic data,
such as education and work, will be dealt with in more detail in later chapters (see chapters 3.3 and 4.3, below).
As elaborated in the methodology chapter, the sampling followed a representational model based on the
overall population composition, of 30 per cent in urban and 70 per cent in rural areas (see chapter 1.4, above). In
our sample, the gender proportion was nearly equal. The age groups were slightly distorted towards younger
20 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
Core Policies and Demographic Features 21
groups, particularly the 17/18 age group. A second aspect of distortion, particularly among women, is that
ages are usually reported as rounded figures. Thus, the proportion of 20 and 25-year olds is disproportionally
high (see Figures 2.2 and even more so Figure 5.1, below). Among the youth, the majority of the women are
already married (64 per cent), as opposed to only 28 per cent among the men. Gender disparities for fertility
were even higher, while already more than 50 per cent of the women had their first child, this proportion was
only 18 per cent among men.
In terms of marriage status, there is an age gap of nearly five years. Whereas the majority of the 19/20 year old
women were already married, this proportion was only one tenth among young men (i.e. a gender disparity
index of nearly 5). By the age of 21, the share among women even increases to two thirds, while among
men this proportion was only reached among the 27/28 year olds, where about half are married from about
25 onwards (see Figure 2.2). Similarly, while more than half of the 18 year old women had already had their
first child, the share among young men was quite low, even among those aged 25 to 30. While the Pakistan-
era Marriage Act (1961) specifies the minimum age for women as 18 and for men as 21, many marriages,
particularly for women, take place at an earlier age.
Figure 2.2 Demographic profle of youth from the sample Figure 2.3 Demographic profle of
getting married (by gender and age groups) getting married (by age group and gender)
In addition to these gender disparities, locational disparities, and even more so regional ones, are quite
pronounced (see below). Overall, one of the interesting findings of this survey are the vast discrepancies
in terms of ideal ages for these life cycle events and the actual ages among the respondents (for a detailed
account see chapter 7.8, below). This pattern can be partly explained by a longer period of education for
young male adolescents (see chapter 3.4, below). Yet, at the same time, among 18-year olds, less than 60 per
cent are still engaged in education (for details see chapter 3.3. below).
Early marriage among girls is quite a crucial indicator for gender disparities. While some are 16 or 17, quite a
few are also younger than that. For a more detailed analysis, we have disaggregated this core demographic
variable at a district level, as well. These disaggregations show that in about one quarter of all districts,
rates of early marriage (at younger than 16) are at about 20 to 30 per cent, and in two cases even higher (in
Rajshahi and Satkira, at 32 per cent each). At the same time, in quite a few districts early marriage is not a
pronounced phenomenon. There, percentages are at less than 10 per cent. While overall, these data are quite
alarming, there have been, at the same time, some rather rapid changes over the past decade. Thus, while
early marriages were not an exception among women aged 25 to 30, in the younger age groups (younger
than 20), these instances have declined quite considerably (for detailed data see Table A1, annex).
1000 500 0 500 1000
15/16
17/18
19/20
21/22
23/24
25/26
27/28
29/30
married
unmarried (men)
divorced/widowed
married
unmarried (women)
diverced/widowed
a
g
e

g
r
o
u
p
s
[
t
o
t
a
l

n
u
m
b
e
r

o
f

c
a
s
e
s
]
ages
male
female

0
100
200
300
400
500
14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28
Figure 2.4 Demographic profle of getting married (women)
(district-level)
When analysing these early ages of getting married, it is of no surprise that ages of having children, or rather
the first child, are quite young, as well. While some studies claim that the average age of women having
children is below 16 (such as Alam and Kabir 2012), our findings do not support this. Instead, the single
largest group of women had their first child at the age of 18. Yet, the cumulative share of the 16 and 17 age
group is quite substantial (about 15 per cent), and 13 to 15 year olds have also been found, particularly in rural
areas. Among the women residing in urban areas, ages are slightly higher, at 21 and 22. The regional variation
is also quite pronounced. (see Figures 2.6 and 2.7).
22 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
cartography: Graner 2012
data source: IGS Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011
Dhaka
Comilla
Tangail
B A N G L A D E S H
Age of women when getting
married (BYS 2011)
under 16
16 and 17
18 and 19
20 and older
(n= 1761 women)
0 50 100
km
122
Moulvi Bazar Hobiganj
Netrakona
Kishoreganj
Narsingd
Gazipur
Shariatpur
Chandpur
Brahmanbaria
Narayanganj
Munshiganj
Chandpur Feni
Noakhali
Rangamati
Jhalakati
Barisal
Gopaljanj
Narail
Jessore
Bagerhat
Barguna
Patuakhali
Bhola
Perojpur
Khulna
Satkhira
Chittagong
Khagrachari
Coxs Bazar
Bandarban
Madaripur
Faridpur
Jhenaidah
Magura
Kushtia
Chuadanga
Meherpur
Rajbari
Pabna
Sirajganj
Natore
Rajshahi
Nawabganj
Manikganj
Sylhet
Sunamganj
Mymensingh
Bogra
Jamalpur
Naogaon
Gaibandha
Jaipurhat
Rangpur Dinajpur
Thakurgaon
Nilphamari
Lalmonirhat
Panchagarh
Sherpur
Kurigram
As mentioned above, there are quite pronounced gender disparities, and only a few among the men have
fathered children, even among the higher age groups. Among those who have done so, less than 5 per cent
have done so prior to reaching the age of 19, whereas most have had their first child between the age of 20
and 24. Interestingly, the latter age was also seen as ideal by many among the women, although most of
their actual life experiences are distinctly different (for details see chapter 7.4, below). Some of these gender
disparities might be linked to education and work, as will be elaborated in the next chapters.
Figure 2.5 Demographic profle of having the
frst child (by age and gender)

Figure 2.6 Demographic profle of having
children (for Chittagong and Rajshahi)


Core Policies and Demographic Features 23
[
t
o
t
a
l

n
u
m
b
e
r

o
f

c
a
s
e
s
]
ages
male
female
0
50
100
150
200
250
300
350
12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28
12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28
[
n
u
m
b
e
r

o
f

c
a
s
e
s
]
0
2
4
6
8
10
12
Chittagong
Rajshahi
0 20 40 60 80 100
Rajshahi
Jhalokati
Chuadanga
Sylhet
Khagrachhari
Satkhira
Jessore
Sunamganj
Chandpur
Pabna
Khulna
Dinajpur
Nilphamari
Habiganj
Kurigram
Rangpur
Panchagarh
Narail
Gopalganj
Thakurgaon
Naogaon
Madaripur
Mymensingh
Noakhali
Faridpur
Sherpur
Bogra
Manikganj
Joypurhat
Meherpur
Average
Pirojpur
Munshiganj
Bhola
Gazipur
Gaibandha
Lakshmipur
Barguna
Jhenaidah
Brahmanbari
Nawabganj
Jamalpur
Tangail
Magura
Lal monirhat
Rajbari
Patuakhali
Natore
Kushtia
Netrakona
Sirajganj
Narayanganj
Barisal
Dhaka
Maulvibazar
Rangamati
Comilla
Narsingdi
Chittagong
Kishorgang
Bagerhat
Banderban
Coxs Bazar
Feni
Shariatpur
under 16
16 and 17
18 and 19
20 (Plus)
Figure 2.7 Demographic profle of having the frst
child (by district)
2.4 Bangladeshi Youth - A Brief Socio-Economic Profile and Ownership of Assets
In addition to the demographic data, details of the socio-economic situation of the entire household is also
crucial to gaining a better understanding of youth. We have tried to capture this aspect in various forms,
one is in the form of self-reported incomes. As argued in the Governance Barometer Survey this might be
imprecise (Aziz and Graner 2012, 12ff ) as we need to rely on both the knowledge of the respondents as well
as the willingness to disclose this information. Generally, it is difficult to assess how exact these answers have
been but we hope that variations are similar across the country, and thus comparisons are possible. At the
same time, these (rough) values have been the baseline for forming income quintiles, as a basis for further
analyses. As incomes might only be a vague proxy for agricultural households, we have also included one
question about food sufficiency (see below). A further proxy variable aimed at a self-assessment of their social
status, is in the form of class.
Most respondents among the youth have assessed their household incomes in rounded figures (5000 Taka,
6000 Taka, 7500 Taka, or 10,000 Taka). Yet, some have provided quite precise figures, presumably based on a
comparatively exact knowledge about household incomes. Among the respondents, about one fifth of the
households had monthly incomes of less than 5,000 Taka. Among this group, a considerable number reported
total incomes of 3000 or 4000 Taka only. The single largest group reported monthly household incomes of
about 10,000 Taka. In addition, there was a large group with incomes of 13,000 to 15,000 Taka and a few
around 20,000 Taka (see Figure 2.8, below). In regard to lower-income households, it is difficult to assess
whether this is due to under-reporting or whether these are actual figures. In addition, there is a considerable
methodological difficulty when converting agricultural incomes into cash values.
Based on these self-reported household incomes, we have grouped all youth into five income quintiles,
i.e. five groups of (roughly) equal size. The lowest income quintile is those with incomes below 5000 Taka,
followed by 5000 - 7500 Taka, 7500 - 10000, 10000 -15000 Taka. The highest income quintile had incomes of
more than 15,000 Taka. Within the latter group, the single largest income group was 20,000 Taka, although
there have been a number of households with incomes of 30,000 to 50,000 as well, and even a few with more
than 100,000 Taka. The proportional shares of these income groups vary significantly in the three localities
(see also Aziz and Graner for last years Governance Barometer Survey). More than half of all households in
city corporations have monthly incomes above 10,000 Taka, and the larger share among these even above
15,000 Taka. In (other) urban areas and rural areas this is much less (at 40 and 31 per cent), and there the fourth
quintile outnumbers the fifth.
Figure 2.8 Income distribution among the households Figure 2.9 Income quintiles and
(for detailed income groups) locational distribution
24 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011

0 500 1000 1500
3000 - 3600
4000 - 4800
5000,0
5400 - 6000
6500 - 7500
8000,0
8500 - 9500
10000,0
11000 - 12800
13000 - 15000
16000 - 24000
25000 - 29000
30000 - 45000
> 50000
m
o
n
t
h
l
y

i
n
c
o
m
e
s
no. of households

0 500 1000 1500 2000
Up to 5000
5001 - 7500 TK
7501 - 10000 TK
10001 - 15000 TK
> 15001 TK
city corporation
urban
rural
Among the households, about 42 per cent (n = 2,746) are also engaged in agriculture. For some of these
households, the contribution of agricultural production (and sales) is quite substantial. Thus, more than half
of those in the lowest income quintile substantially supplement, and at times even subsidise their incomes
with self-grown food (or vice versa). Overall, agriculture is of importance for households in all income groups
(see Figure 2.10, below). Yet, this may partly be a circular conclusion, as some of the households in the higher
income groups may be in these groups due to the incomes they receive from the sales of surplus food, and/
or other agricultural products. Yet, at the other end of the social spectrum, quite a number of young people
have reported that their households are in one of the lower income quintiles but are neither food sufficient.
These households are certainly under enormous pressure to cover their monthly, or rather daily, subsistence
needs and (cash) expenses.
Quite an interesting exercise was to request the respondents to assess their social status in the form of five
different class categories, namely working class, lower middle class, middle class, upper middle class and
upper class. Among all respondents, the vast majority opted for the middle class, even in the lowest and
highest income groups. Only among the households in the highest income quintiles, about one quarter
classified themselves as upper middle or even upper class. A large proportion among those in the lowest two
income quintiles categorised themselves as working class, but interestingly, some of the higher quintiles also
did so (see Figure 2.11).
Figure 2.10 Combined incomes and levels of food sufciency (for agricultural households)
Figure 2.11 Level of incomes and self-assessment of class status

0 200 400 600 800
Up to 5000
5001 - 7500 TK
7501 - 10000 TK
10001 - 15000 TK
15001 TK and above
no. of households (n= 2,746)
< 3 months
3 - 6 months
7 - 9 months
10 - 12 months
working class
lower middle class
middle class
upper middle class
upper class
not applicable
0 20 40 60 80 100
Up to 5000
5 - 7500 TK
75-10000 TK
10-15000 TK
> 15001 TK
City corp.
Urban
Rural
I
n
c
o
m
e
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
Core Policies and Demographic Features 25
26 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
For a better understanding of the living environment of young people, the survey also included a brief section
about the core assets of the households. To some extent, this reflects district-level availability of infrastructure,
as for instance in terms of landlines for electricity and telephones. As elaborated in last years Governance
Barometer Survey, the density of landline telephones is extremely low. Across the country this was less than 1
per cent. As was shown for last year, there are quite substantial locational disparities, where city corporations
have much higher densities (at nearly 5 per cent versus 0.5 per cent in rural areas). Interestingly, social disparities
are not as pronounced as we would have thought, and landlines are only owned by 2.3 per cent among the
highest income quintile (versus 0.3 to 0.7 per cent for all other incomes groups; see Figures 2.12 and 2.13).
Among all communication assets (other than mobile phones), the ownership of television sets is the highest
(52.2 per cent). At the same time, disparities across income groups are only moderately high, at 29.7 versus
79.7 per cent (i.e. a social disparity index of 2.7). Compared to TV sets, the ownership of personal computers
is extremely low, at an average of 10 per cent. At the same time, social disparities are much higher (4.6 versus
22.5 per cent among the lowest and highest income groups, respectively). Overall, the ownership of these
assets also has a strong regional pattern. At a district level, the ownership of TVs ranges from nearly 80 per
cent (Narajanganj and Dhaka) to less than 20 per cent (in Faridpur and Barguna; see Figure 2.12). At the same
time, disparities by localities are much lower, at 45 versus 84 per cent, for rural and city corporation areas,
respectively (see Figure 2.13).





Figure 2.12 Ownership of TV sets (district level)
Barguna
Faridpur
Bhola
Patuakhali
Bagerhat
Coxs Bazar
Jhalokati
Gaibandha
Bogra
Narail
Kurigram
Madaripur
Kishorganj
Nawabganj
Chandpur
Sirajganj
Netrakona
Dinajpur
Mymensing
Comilla
Barisal
Sherpur
Satkhira
Lakshmipur
Joypurhat
Lalmonirhat
Rangamati
Feni
Natore
Tangail
Shariatpur
Gopalgaj
Rangpur
Jessore
Rajshahi
Chuadanga
Maulvibazar
Naogaon
Panchagarh
Khagrachhari
Rajbari
Nilphamari
Noakhali
Pirojpur
Meherpur
Khulna
Jamalpur
Gazipur
Habiganj
Sunamganj
Munshiganj
Magura
Kushtia
Pabna
Thakurgaon
Chittagong
Jhenaidah
Sylhet
Manikganj
Narsingdi
Brahmanbari
Bandarban
Dhaka
Narayanganj

0 25 50 75 100
Figure 2.13 Ownership of core assets (by localities)
Figure 2.14 Ownership of core assets
(by income groups)
0 25 50 75 100
[percentages]
Rural
Urban
City corp.
tv
computer
telephone
> 15001 tk
10001 - 15000 tk
7501 - 10000 tk
5001 - 7500 tk
up to 5000
0 250 500 750 1000 1250
tv
computer
telephone
[total no. of households]
Pabna x/2012
C

H

A

P

T

E

R
3
Governing Education
(Re-)Assessing Policies and Achievements
28 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
3.1 Governing Education - An Introduction
Education is one of the cornerstones of qualifying young people for setting up their lives. Thus, for any state,
the smooth operation of educational institutions is quintessential to the delivery of any services, worldwide.
A Chinese proverb captures this crucial function quite pointedly: if you plan for a year, sow rice; if you plan for
ten years, plant trees, if you plan for one hundred years, educate people. At the same time, this proverb also
points out another dimension of education, namely that it is not a short term policy. For governing education,
the state needs to put in place a well-thought out set of rules and regulations, that clearly defines the various
types of education, and the respective public and private agencies that will be allowed to offer these services.
While during the 1970s and 1980s education was seen as a basic service and conceptualised under the basic
needs approach, it is now ranked much more stringently within the human rights context.
Bangladesh, being a signatory to the Millennium Declaration, as well as all major global education policies, has
committed itself to achieving universal primary education by 2015. The present Awami League government
has even gone one step further and proclaimed that they are willing to eradicate the curse of illiteracy from
the country and reach this goal by 2014, i.e. by the end of their electoral mandate (Bangladesh Awami League
2008). Yet, we would argue that at the current rate of success, it is nearly impossible to achieve this goal.
Above all, at the current rates of expanding education to the wide range of regional and social left outs even
2020 seems quite an ambitious timeline. This assessment differs quite substantially from usual assessments
(Daily Star 2010, GOB and UNDP 2009) and might seem (much) too pessimistic, at first sight. Yet, we will
demonstrate that our survey leaves little space for optimism.
For monitoring EFA and the MDGs, there have been tight mechanisms, both in terms of achievements and
policies. UNESCO in their 2010 Global Monitoring Report (GMR) for EFA have placed gover nance at centre
stage, as epitomised in the title Overcoming inequality: why governance matters. Their core argument is
that governance define[s] who sets priorities and makes decisions in key areas (ibid. 2010, 129), such as
curriculum, teacher management, monitoring and supervision. In regard to finance they point out that it is
of importance to analyse how priorities are set and how resources are mobilised, allocated and managed
(ibid.). In a similar line of argument, Transparency International in their Education Watch Africa, defines good
governance as ensuring that the necessary re sources [..] are managed in a transparent and accountable
manner (ibid. 2010). This also includes the distribution of power in decision-making and how the decision-
making process affects citizens (ibid., 130).
This chapter will address a few crucial aspects of education. First of all, it will give a brief introduction to the
current global education policy, and Bangladeshs national policy reform process (chapter 3.2). We will then
provide an analysis of educational achievements from the demographic section of the BYS, and compare
this to other studies. This includes a detailed enumeration of enrolment ages in different classes (I, V, and
VIII) and examination levels (SSC and HSC), as well as the types of schools. As in other chapters, these will
be disaggregated by gender, localities, age groups, income groups and for core parameters also at a district
level (chapter 3.3). This is followed by a section where we asked young people what they thought was most
important in education, and this will be briefly presented at an aggregate level (chapter 3.4). Fourthly, we
have asked the youth about their experiences while enrolled and what they think could, or in most cases
could have, made a difference in improving (their) education. As a last sub-chapter we will briefly summarise
these findings and provide a few policy recommendations. Overall, this follows Shobhans call for the need
to dispassionately evaluate the state of the economy (ibid. 2007, 356), and its core development indicators,
such as education.
Governing Educaton- (Re-)Assessing Policies and Achievements 29
3.2 Translating Global Education Policies into National Policies
The general consensus on the need to introduce and systematically provide universal primary education
all across the globe has been emphasised, and re-emphasised, over the past decades on various occasions.
At the same time, there has been a crucial shift in paradigm, from con cept ualising education within a basic
needs framework to one where it has become one of the core parameters of human rights. This point was
even made by the current Finance Minister in his budget speech 2010 (GOB 2010, 56). The implications of
this shift are far reaching, as this drastically strengthens the position of the parents and students vis-a-vis the
state. When fully considering the consequences, education is no longer a service that could, or may, or may
not, be provided to (most) students for a number of years. Instead, the inability of the state (i.e. the respective
governments) to provide basic or at least primary education to all students can now be addressed as a gross
and severe violation of human rights. As such it might and, at some stage, even should, be liable to criminal
prosecution.
On the other hand, the details of implementing this policy and legislation remain either largely unaddressed
or vaguely specified. Two recent international forums have tried to provide outcome-based indicators. One
of these is assessing universal primary education by net enrolment rates (NERs). They have also provided a
strategy framework on how to translate this global goal into national policy frameworks. When world leaders
met in Jomtien (Thailand) in autumn 1990, they drafted a rather ambitious plan for achieving (primary)
Education-For-All (EFA) within the following decade, i.e. by 2000. As is usually the case, there was a need
to revise this goal in 2000, when world leaders again met, this time in Senegal. When drafting the Dakar
Framework of Action (DFA) they felt the need to ex tend the previous timeline by another fifteen years,
in compliance with the UNs contem porary approach of tackling the world poverty in the context of the
Millennium Develop ment Goals (MDGs; see Figure 3.1, below).
When world leaders gathered in New York in September 2010 in order to attend the follow-up of the
2000 Millennium Summit, some of them were decorated with a special prize for best performance, and
Bangladeshs Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina was among them. She was being congratulated for outstanding
achievements in reducing child mortality rates and there was, or at least seems to have been, a general
consensus that the other goals were likely to be reached, as well (for media coverage in Bangladesh see for
instance Daily Star 2010). Overall, evaluations and core assessments of MDGs are usually characterised by
rather favourable inter pretations. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) usually address and reflect a minimal
consensus. For assessing achievements in education, primary net enrolment rates (NERs) are supposedly a
moderately precise proxy variable. Yet, it needs to be pointed out that figures are vague, as the registration of
births is cryptic (see also unicef 2009, MICS). In addition, the actual numbers of students are (partly) politically
motivated. As a result, this indicator can only be seen as a rather rough guestimation (an argument that also
applies for neighbouring countries; see Graner 2006).
Policies to strengthen education have been a priority in Bangladeshi politics since independence in 1971.
Based on the constitutional obligation to provide primary education, different governments have adopted
various policies, strategies, and time lines (see Figure 3.1). A major administrative reform was made in 1981,
when the Directorate of Primary Education was established. Along with it, education administration was
decentralised, by strengthening local management committees to control and manage this sector. At the
same time, the need for increased community participation was linked to low cost solutions, a feature that
is still prevalent today. A second major step for institutional reforms was the Primary Education Act 1990 that
30 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
introduced compulsory education all across the country. Along with this piece of legislation there was an
increased influx in international grants and support, such as the Primary Education Development Programme
(PEDP).
In 2003, Bangladesh prepared a national action plan for Education for All with a specific set of goals to
achieve by 2015. A major component was the Primary Education Development Programme-II (PEDP-II), that
aimed at increasing primary school access, participation and completion rates. Primary education became
free for all children in government run schools and the provision of textbooks at the primary level was made
free for students in all government and registered non-government schools. In addition, stipend programmes
and incentives were given for the purpose of equitable access to primary education. As a major institutional
change, a new ministry was established, the Ministry of Primary and Mass Education (MOPME) and it was put
in charge of focusing on the needs of the vast majority of illiterate adults and younger students. At the same
time, such a duality of administration also tends to complicate decision-making processes, particularly during
the current reform process. Above all, it gives rise to endless bickering about allocations and budget priorities.
Indeed, during most of the past decade, the budget allocation to the MOE exceeded the ones allocated to the
MOPME (see Figure 2.2; for details see Graner and Yasmin 2012).

Figure 3.1 Targets for Net Enrolment Rates under Figure 3.2 Budget allocations to the two
various policies Education Ministries (MoE and MoPME)
The most recent policy framework is the National Education Policy 2009, drafted by an 18-member Education
Commission and passed in parliament in May 2010. As a follow on programme of PEDP II, the government
and its partners agreed on PEDP III (interim termed PROG 3), commencing from June 2011 onwards. The core
features, as in neighbouring countries, are the expansion of free and compulsory primary education from
class I to VIII, an extension that is usually addressed under the term basic education. Along with it, secondary
education is being extended up to class XII, and there is a renewed emphasis on technical and vocational
studies and trainings to create skilled population. In order to achieve better outcomes in primary education,
a one year pre-primary education scheme is added, as well as the provision that indigenous students [are]
to be taught in their mother language and will have teachers to speak in their tongues (GOB 2010a, 7). In
addition, special suggestions to reduce drop-outs include scholarships, mid-day meals, hostels in remote
areas, adjustment of school time table to local level work cycles.
Characterising education as the backbone of the nation, the Education Policy 2011 places emphasis largely on
the need for adequately educating the new generations of the country. It clearly states that it is not a political
agenda but that it rather accumulates the recommendations of previous education polices and education

EFA
MDGs
Five Year Plans (x)
HIES
PRSP
[
p
e
r
c
e
n
t
a
g
e
s
]
100
75
50
25
0
1
9
7
0
1
9
7
5
1
9
8
0
1
9
8
5
1
9
9
0
1
9
9
5
2
0
0
0
2
0
0
5
2
0
1
0
2
0
1
5
100,000
80,000
60,000
40,000
20,000
0
1
9
9
9
/
0
0
2
0
0
0
/
0
1
2
0
0
2
/
0
3
2
0
0
1
/
0
2
2
0
0
3
/
0
4
2
0
0
4
/
0
5
2
0
0
5
/
0
6
MoE
MoPME
[
i
n

t
h
o
u
s
a
n
d


t
a
k
a
]
Governing Educaton- (Re-)Assessing Policies and Achievements 31
commissions and experts, as well as the Constitution and international conventions. Overall, the aim of
social inclusion is a core principle. For counterbalancing social exclusion, there is a separate allocation in the
education budget to increase the number of female students, as well as stipends for street children. Generally,
the policy also aims at a stronger involvement of the parents, local citizens and elected local representatives
in school management committees (SMCs). It also encourages the building of public - private partnership to
improve primary and vocational education (for more details see also chapter 4.4., below). The Commission
also suggested an integrated Education Law (ibid.), yet it is not very likely that this will be promulgated within
the next two years. At the same time, the preface allows for some future changes, stating that It will be
modified according to the needs of time and situation (ibid., preface).
The Education Policy stresses modern, updated and quality education to turn the young generation into
competent human resources. This also asks for substantial improvements in the quality of teachers in all
educational streams. Thus, it gives emphasis to developing a uniform curriculum for all students, irrespective
of their religion, gender, physical limitations, socio-economic and geographic locations. In line with the
global policy agenda of inclusive education (UNESCO 2010) it also instructs the line agencies to take special
measures for the development of education of under-privileged groups, including street-children, physically
and mentally challenged learners and to promote and develop the languages and cultures of indigenous and
small ethnic groups. Overall, it should be non-communal although there will be compulsory subjects on religion
and ethics for students up to class VIII. As a political compromise, the policy dropped the word secular from
its draft to make it acceptable to all segments of society.
Overall, many analysts appraised the Education Policy 2010. At the same time, many stated that its
implementation will be a challenge for the government, as it has neither the financial nor the human resources
needed (for instance Ahmed 2010). In addition, governance, or the lack of it, is an important aspect (World
Bank 2000, CAMPE 2009, CPD 2001 and 2009, Muhith 2007). The Nagorik Commissions Vision 2021 argues
that in the interest of building an efficient system of governance [..] investing in the right type of education
will be crucial (CPD 2007, 27). Such a policy, they argue, needs to be based on a number of core features, such
as the de-politicisation of education, where students and teachers interact without being held hostage to
party politics (ibid., 31). Secondly, they argue in favour of the need for decentralisation, in terms of creating
a stronger accountability of teachers to local communities (see also Hossain et al. 2002). And thirdly, they
point out the need for a longer-term perspective. They critically assess the custom of setting up an Education
Commission by every regime (ibid.), and instead suggest a permanent Commission on Education, including
members from civil society, the academic community, government education establishment, with a budget
and a secretariat. Similar concerns have also been expressed by the media. Rahman (2009) has characterised
educational policies as documenting the ruling political partys ideological expression rather than covering
national interest (ibid.).
3.3 Bangladeshi Youth and Their Educational Profiles
More than twenty years after the first Global Conference for achieving (primary) Education for All and twelve
years after the Dakar Conference, the current generation of youth (i.e. the 15 to 30-year olds) should have
profited from these policies, and education should be much more inclusive, even for the older groups of 25-
30 years (i.e. the 5 to 10-year olds back then). This section will focus on the demographic pattern of education,
in regard to their actual achievements, or the lack of it. At first sight, the data from the demographic section
of the BYS seems to suggest that quite a high share among the youngest adolescents (more than 80 per cent)
are still engaged in their education. From this perspective, the National Education Policy seems to be quite
successful. On the other hand, the age pattern can only partly be taken as a proxy variable for educational
achievements, as pointed out in the Governance Barometer Survey (Aziz and Graner 2010, 11ff ) and before
(Graner 2006).

A closer look into the educational profiles shows that among the 15-year olds, 15 per cent have already
dropped out of school, and many among these at a much earlier age. While gender disparities are quite low at
this young age, gender disparities increase rather rapidly. Adolescent men stop (or complete) their education
at about 5 per cent per year, but this rate is nearly double for young women. Thus, enrolment rates show a
linear decrease for men but a nearly exponential decrease for women. As a result, by the age of 16 only 70
per cent of the young women are still at school/college, whereas it is about 80 per cent among the young
men. By the age of 18 the pattern is even more pronounced, at 44 versus 55 per cent, respectively. The highest
disparities are at the age of 20/21, when merely 20 per cent of the women are still engaged in education,
compared to about 45 per cent among the men. Yet, by 22 and 24 there is a strong decline among men, as
well, and by 24 only less than 22 per cent among them are studying (see Figure 3.3). In addition, there are
pronounced regional and social patterns of drop-outs. This can be best exemplified for the 16-year olds (n =
655). While among youth from the lowest income quintile, 32 per cent are out of school (mainly young boys),
it is merely 17 - 18 per cent for the highest two income groups, respectively (with 28 per cent for youth from
middle incomes households).
Overall, a small minority (of 5-6 per cent) had never been to school. While this number might sound
insignificant, at first sight, it also tells a rather sober story, once disaggregated, about the lack of inclusion.
While the share of never attending students is negligible among the highest income groups (at 1 and 3 per
cent, respectively) it is 8 and 10 per cent in the lowest and second lowest group (see Figure 3.4). In addition,
even within primary classes, i.e. prior to class 5, about 5 per cent of the students had dropped out, followed
by ca. another 20 per cent before reaching class 8. As expected, this share is even higher among rural youth,
where values are about 20-25 per cent. In some of the districts, values are even higher (see below), and the
pattern is similar to the one presented in last years Governance Barometer Survey (ibid., 13; see Figure 3.5,
below). Again, there is a pronounced social pattern, and drop-outs are highly concentrated in the lowest two
income quintiles. When seen cumulatively, the numbers quoted above imply that among the lowest income
quintiles less than 20 to 40 per cent have completed their primary education. This indicates that exclusion
rates have remained unacceptably high.
Figure 3.3 Student population among the youth (by gender) Figure 3.4 Student population and non-
students (by income groups)
32 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
students (men)
other (men)
students (women)
other (women)
30
29
28
27
26
25
24
23
22
21
20
19
18
17
16
15
100 80 60 40 20 0 20 40 60 80 100

0 500 1000 1500 2000
up to 5000
5 - 7500 TK
7.5 - 10000 TK
10 - 15000 TK
> 15000
total no. of respondents
yes
never
At the same time, there is a positive trend that non-attendance and drop-outs have decreased quite
significantly over the past one and a half decades. When disaggregating the BYS data according to single-
age groups, this trend is quite obvious. Among 30-year olds, 17 per cent had never attended school, and in
addition, nearly 10 per cent had dropped out prior to class V. Above all, before reaching class VIII, altogether
nearly 60 per cent had dropped out (40 per cent among previously enrolled students plus nearly 20 per cent
of never enrolled students). If so, then only children from the higher two income quintiles and a few from
middle, lower and lowest income groups would have reached class VIII. As a consequence, less than 40 per
cent of them had taken (not necessarily passed) the SSC exam and less than half of the latter (i.e. 20 per cent of
the actual cohort) had also sat for the HSC exam. This clearly documents that until less than one decade ago,
even higher secondary education was highly socially selective and accessible mainly to the upper income
quintile/s (see Figures 3.5 and 3.6, below).
On the other hand, among 18-year olds, less than 4 per cent had never been enrolled in school, and most of
them (more than 95 per cent) reached class V. Nevertheless, one quarter had dropped out before reaching
class VIII, and a little less than 50 per cent sat for the SSC exams (see Figures 3.5 and 3.6). A major positive
trend for expanding higher secondary education has taken place within the last two to six years. While rates
of non-enrollment stood at an average of 65 to 75 per cent, this steadily declined to 45-55 per cent within less
than a decade. A similar trend is also documented for the exams of Higher Secondary Certificates (HSC). At
the same time, our analyses also document the considerable share of over-aged students. Thus, many among
those aged 15 and 16 (completed years !) had not yet obtained their SSC. Thus, while the overall trends are
quite promising, these analyses also clearly indicate the vast need for further, and instant, improvements.
Figure 3.5 Non-enrollment in primary and secondary Figure 3.6 Non-enrollment in higher (secondary)
education (by age groups) education (by age groups)
While both the trend and the data are quite promising there still remain two reasons for concern. One is
the age pattern among those who have dropped out. While the overall age of drop-out is 15, the socio-
economic disaggregation (based on income quintiles) shows that there are vast social disparities. While from
high income households (> 15,000 Tk) only about 10-15 per cent had dropped out before that age, it was
substantially more among those from lower income groups. Thus, among the latter (lowest income quintile
of 5,000 Taka or less) drop outs are about 10 per cent per single year, from an age of about 11 years onwards.
For the three middle income quintiles, ratios are much lower, at 6 per cent for the 11-year olds but still 10-12
per cent when they have reached the age of 12-13. Only the highest income group has a significantly higher
age of drop-out, starting at 14 and reaching double-digit numbers only among 15 to 17-year olds (see Figure
3.7; for detailed figures see Table A2, annex).
Governing Educaton- (Re-)Assessing Policies and Achievements 33

0
10
20
30
40
50
15 17 19 21 23 25 27 29
p
e
r
c
e
n
t

o
f

t
o
t
a
l

a
g
e

g
r
o
u
p
by class 5
by class 8
never to school
15 17 19 21 23 25 27 29
p
e
r
c
e
n
t

o
f

t
o
t
a
l

a
g
e

g
r
o
u
p
0
20
40
60
80
100
by class 5
by class 8
no SSC
no HSC
34 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
The second reason for concern is the pattern of enrollment, or rather the lack of it, among the current student
age cohort (aged 6 to 18). Our survey has included detailed information of this from the household roster,
which covers a total of 9,191 siblings from our BYS sample. This documents a pronounced pattern of non-
enrollment and thus, indirectly, drop-out rates. Above all, this clearly indicates that there is not even a single
age group where enrollment is universal. This data is quite concerning, and it is even lower than our last years
Governance Barometer Survey, where at least all 10-year olds were enrolled. We doubt that overall there is a
negative trend, and one possible explanation is a better regional coverage of our sample (for 2010 the sample
included only households from 33 districts). At the same time, these data give rise to serious doubts about
achieving the MDGs within this decade, let alone by 2014 (or even 2015). As these rates represent the national
average, rates in some districts are even lower. Again, many of the northern districts have quite low values
(see below).
Figure 3.7 Age of drop-out from school (for Figure 3.8 NERs among the currently 6 to 18-year olds
highest and lowest income quintiles) (n = 9191)
As elaborated last year, these overall patterns of early drop-outs have an additional critical dimension. While
absolute ages of 10 to 14 seem to suggest that youth have completed their primary education, these two
indicators should be clearly distinguished. Thus, the phenomenon of having an over-aged student population
is quite pronounced, even at the national level. In addition, some of the districts have an extremely high share
of over-aged students in primary classes. The BYS data even indicate that in some cases, this share is larger
than the actual student group.
From the household sample, all those aged 12-14 have been selected (n = 1745) and a rather promisingly
large share of them was still at school (90 per cent at an average). Districts with a large number of early drop-
outs were Mymensingh, Sirajganj, Gazipur and nearly all districts in the Sylhet division. On the other hand,
a quite concerning aspect is obvious when analysing which classes these (teen aged) students attend. At a
national average, 30 per cent of all students of this age group were still studying in primary classes or have, so
far, only completed class 5. Even more alarmingly, in several districts this share was even 35-45 per cent. When
seen cumulatively with the out-of- school population, the shares of students who are not yet in secondary
class are higher than 50 per cent in quite a number of districts, and all across the country. In three cases this
share is nearly 60 per cent (Barguna, Faridpur and Bhola) and in two cases even above 60 per cent (Madaripur
and Khagrachari; see Figure 3.9, below)
When considering the New Education Policy and the aim at extending universal primary education from
class V up to class VIII, these data give rise to serious doubts. If it has not been possible to achieve universal
primary education up to class V over the past two decades, how likely is it then to reach universal class VIII
education within the near future. Needless to say, socio-economic patterns are similarly strong.
0
5
10
15
20
25
30
6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
p
e
r
c
e
n
t
a
g
e
s
lowest income quintile
highest income quintile
0
10
20
30
40
50
60
70
80
90
100
6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
age groups
p
e
r
c
e
n
t
a
g
e
boys (at school)
boys (out of school)
girls (at school)
girls (out of school)



Figure 3.9 Student and non-student population aged 12 to 14 (district-level)
3.4 Assessing the Importance of Education
When discussing what are the most important aspects of their lives, education has always been mentioned
as being of core importance. In order to find out more details, we have tried to get feed back about which
particular aspects of education are of importance. For doing so, we have provided the respondents with a
subset of different aspects that could be defining the importance attributed to education. These options
include i) years of schooling, ii) type of school, iii) having good teachers, iv) costs for education, v) development
cartography: Graner 2012
data source: IGS Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011
Dhaka
Chandpur
Tangail
Bogra
B A N G L A D E S H
Educational status of
12 to 14 year olds (BYS 2011)
out of school
primary classes
secondary classes
(n= 1575 students)
0 50 100
km
89
Kishoreganj
Mymensingh
Jamalpur
Sunamganj
Sirajganj
Sylhet
Netrakona
Sherpur
Gazipur
Moulvi Bazar Hobiganj
Narsingd
Brahmanbaria
Narayanganj
Khagrachari
Feni
Noakhali
Chittagong
Rangamati
Lakshmipur
Barisal
Jhalakati
Coxs Bazar
Bhola
Patuakhali
Barguna
Bagerhat
Perojpur
Khulna
Satkhira
Gopaljanj Jessore
Narail
Jhenaidah
Magura
Chuadanga
Rajbari
Manikganj
Kushtia
Meherpur
Pabna
Faridpur
Munshiganj
Natore
Chandpur
Rajshahi
Nawabganj
Naogaon
Dinajpur
Gaibandha
Jaipurhat
Thakurgaon
Rangpur
Kurigram
Nilphamari
Panchagarh
Lalmonirhat
Shariatpur
Madaripur
Comilla
Bandarban
Governing Educaton- (Re-)Assessing Policies and Achievements 35
36 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
of creativity and vi) acquisition of life skills. Interestingly, we had quite some discussions prior to finalising
these aspects, and development of creativity, as well as life skills, were the two most hotly debated issues,
also in regard to possible Bangla translations (shristhi shilota and jibon chaloner jono projonio dokkhota).
Nevertheless, as it is a crucial concept in Western education, and gradually incorporated into global
education policies, this was also included.
As mentioned earlier, there was a strong tendency among the respondents to attach a high importance to
everything. Methodologically, only ranking could have provided a clearer picture but for this question we did
not include this (or rather needed to delete it while shortening the questionnaire). Nevertheless, there are
a few aspects that seem to be more important than others. The highest level of agreement has been given
to having good teachers (99 %), with nearly 90 per cent of these in the highly important category. Among
all other options, the type of school received the lowest agreement among the highest category, although
still 60 per cent. Within these answers, there are no pronounced differences among respondents, based on
location, gender, age or income groups. One exception was that the concept of life skills seems to be more
important for lower income groups than those from the highest income quintiles (at 83 % as opposed to 67%,
respectively).
Similar findings have also been made during the FGDs, although there the disparities among locations,
professions and academic backgrounds were much more pronounced. The students mentioned that they
face difficulties as there are not adequate teachers in the schools. Again, those who are available are either
not experienced enough or are (too) busy giving private tuition, hampering the regular teaching process
(see also Sainath 1997 for India or Graner 2006 for Nepal). This forces students into taking private tuition to
complete the curriculum, and this again increases overall educational costs, possibly even quite considerably
(see Graner and Yasmin/IGS 2010 and 2012). Many among the students that we interviewed were from public
colleges/universities but still they stated that in spite of this, they have to pay various fees every year, and this
can be quite a burden on their families.

Figure 3.10 Important aspects of education
3.5 Assessing the Education Policy - A Call for Better Trained Teachers
Among all policies, the education policy is certainly the one that is of most immediate relevance to young
people. Some of them, particularly in the youngest age group (15-18) and partly even those between 18 and
0 20 40 60 80 100
Years of schooling
Type of school
Having good teachers
Cost of education
Develop creativity
Acquisition of life skills
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
cannot say
21 are still engaged in their education. Even those who have either completed their education or dropped
out in the recent past have first hand experience. Thus, it is quite understandable that when asked what the
government could do in order to improve the lives of youth, there was an uniquivocal consensus (of nearly
95 per cent) about the need to improve the quality of education (see below). At the same time disparities,
whether gender, locational, or based on income groups were minimal. Among the different age groups, there
is a weak pattern that this consensus increases along with younger age groups (93.6 versus 94.6 %).
At the same time, there have also been rather clear comments about different policy measures on how to
achieve this overall goal. The highest level of agreement has been given for the need for better training of
teachers and better tuition classes, particularly for low performing students (see Figure 3.11). Better books
and more teachers seem to be less of a priority, and the latter even faced a strong opposition (highly disagree),
although a small one (5 %). The need for regular school meals or a revised curriculum was not seen as a strong
priority, and the latter received the highest level of disagreement, of nearly 10 per cent. On this issue we
strongly disagree, as will be elaborated later.
In addition to this listing of general agreement/disagreements for specific policy measures, the exercise of
ranking these gave some important information about actual priorities. Here, the urgency of better teacher
training was re-confirmed, by a vast majority of more than half of all respondents. Yet, at the same time,
having more teachers was also stated quite prominently, interestingly as a first priority or not at all. This
priority ranking also shows that better tuition classes are seen as the second most important priority when
cumulatively seen (see Figure 3.12). At the same time, our focus group discussions have also shown that
overall there is quite a low degree of information about recent policy changes and policy measures. Even
about the crucial reform of expanding primary to basic education up to class VIII only higher educated youth
were familiar with. The low level of schooling among their younger siblings (aged 6 to 18) is also quite a
concern, as elaborated above. At the same time this also strongly contradicts their perspectives when asked
about ideal ages for completing (their) education. There, an astonishing majority stated that they wish to
study until their early twenties (for more details see chapter 7.4, below).
Figure 3.11 Assessing the education policy Figure 3.12 Priorities for educational policies

Governing Educaton- (Re-)Assessing Policies and Achievements 37
0 20 40 60 80 100
More teachers
Better training for teachers
Better books
Better tuition classes
Fewer exams
Regular school meals
Revised curriculum
More schools
highly agree
somewhat agree
somewhat disagree
highly disagree
do not know
0 10 0 0 2 0 0 0 3 0 0 0 4 0 0 0 50 0 0
More teachers
Better training for teachers
Better books
Better tuition classes
Taking exams in right time
Regular school meals
Revised curriculum
frst
second
third
3.6 Strengthening Education Governance - (Re-)Considering Policies
The data from the education section of the BYS clearly documents that the country has made major
improvements in expanding education. When addressing the UN General Assembly in 2010, the Prime Minister
was moderately optimistic that all goals, not only the reduction of child mortality, are close to being reached.
Yet, we would counter-argue that achieving the MDGs for education will need quite a substantial effort, and
that immediate policy measures are necessary. We would also argue that this first of all needs to strengthen
governance in the sector. For doing so, there need to be clear regulations about reforming educational policies
and to (re-)define the rights and responsibilities of all stakeholders, including the governments own role.
While the expansion of education is certainly a vital component of improving education, this also needs to
strengthen the inclusion of low income and other excluded groups. If this inclusive education has not been
achieved for class V students, then the expansion up to class VIII is quite unlikely. In order to achieve this, there
needs to be a much clearer understanding about the support the schools need in order to attract children
and to enhance their learning outcomes. When doing field work for a previous research project, focus group
discussions often addressed the limited funds that schools have, irrespective of moderately good funding
at the central level. Yet, there, allocation of funds has a strong bias towards infrastructure, a priority that
schools and school management committees rarely share. In addition to the (lack of ) funds, school teachers
often complained about the highly politicised patterns of job recruitment, where academic or pedagogic
qualifications are usually secondary, if considered at all.
While the regulation between the state and their teachers is certainly a crucial aspect for safeguarding
education, the regulation between the state and the students, or rather their parents, is an even more critical
one. While the Education Act specifies that education is compulsory there are hardly any measures to safeguard
these rights for children. Overall, education analysts tend to blame parents for the lack of interest in sending
their children to school. At the same time, explanatory factors often have two core lines of argument, one is
that parents are illiterate, and the other is their poverty. While illiteracy can only be reduced via long-term
policies, we would argue that the one about poverty is much easier to counterbalance. Given the prevalence
of poverty as an explanatory variable, one immediate policy could be the introduction of high-quality mid
day meals. If so, the argument about the need to earn money would be void, as children hardly ever earn
more than covering the cost of one proper meal a day. At the same time, mid day meals are directly related to
attendance and thus safeguard daily participation in classes.
A second argument for drop-outs is that students who are slow learners can not follow classes. At the same
time, these students are more likely to be from households where they are first-generation learners (i.e.
having illiterate parents), and where parents can neither provide help nor afford additional costs for private
tuition classes. Again, this short coming could be tackled in form of free additional tuition classes for these low
capacity and/or slow learners. We would argue that the combination mid day meals and such classes, rather
than additional teachers or any other policy measures, could drastically encourage and motivate students
and their parents, to carry on with their education as well as to safeguard regular attendance. Although
both measures post substantial additional needs for the budget, we would argue that these measures
are imperative and the best way forward. At the same time, additional budgets could be raised in form of
public-private (and/or religious) partnerships, where business persons and other local elites and dignitaries
contribute to fund raising and supporting schools.
38 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
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4
Employment and Vocational Training
Chittagong v/2011
40 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
4.1 Employment and Vocational Training - An Introduction
Given the demographic composition of Bangladeshs population, a large proportion joins the labour force
each year. The GOB assesses that the country will need to create at least two and a quarter million jobs per
year, in order to accommodate these cohorts. A similar estimation is also provided by the World Bank, that
has calculated that there needs to be a near doubling of the labour force from about 55 million to 100 million
by 2020 (ibid. 2006, 1). Yet, while on the one hand they argue that Bangladeshs greatest strength is its
people [..] they are well known for hard work and resilience under stress (ibid. 2002, 6), they also point to a
rather critical aspect, namely that Bangladeshs economy and human development could have grown faster
than its actual progression in the last 25 years (ibid. 2002, 52), if it had taken substantial steps in educational
development at an earlier stage.
While we would generally agree with the need to expand the labour market, we would also feel the need to
point out that in addition to creating new employment, there is an urgent need to strengthen governance
mechanisms for the existing labour force (see also Graner and Akhter 2012). Only if both goals are being
balanced, can the overall target of sustainable and equitable economic development be more than just
political lip service. To achieve this, skill development is certainly crucial. Yet, it should be kept in mind that
overall governance also has a number of other facets. For labour markets, there is the urgent need to safeguard
the interests of all sectors of the economy and the respective stakeholders, whether well-off and politically
well connected or not, and irrespective of the locality. Ideally, this also includes labour migrants abroad (see
also IGS 2010, 89). As these stakeholders have realistically different and even conflicting interests and power
positions, the government needs to put in place comprehensive arbitration mechanisms.
Overall, most young people have quite substantial difficulties in finding work and employment, and this
is a pattern across the region, and elsewhere (see Mayer and Hettige 2002, Ratnasinghe 2012, for general
discussions see also Furlong 2009c and Mortimer 2009). Among the higher educated youth, many need to wait
a considerable time before finding employment that they find attractive enough, both in terms of salaries/
wages and the work itself. Among the less educated ones, integration into the labour force takes place at
times even during their early teens, and prior to completing a moderately acceptable level of education. Yet,
irrespective of education and social status, many of the youth, whether highly educated or not, often need
to make substantial compromises, in terms of wages and types of work. Overall, wages and salaries in many
sectors have increased only moderately, and often lag behind general inflation rates, a point also frequently
discussed during the FGDs.
This chapter will start off by briefly summarising and analysing the core policy documents that have been
drafted by successive governments over the past decade (chapter 4.2). We will then provide an in-depth
analysis of the BYS data for work and employment (chapter 4.3), as well as skills and vocational training
(chapter 4.4). This will be followed by the findings from the perception survey, regarding why youth think
that Vocational and Technical training is important and which aspects they think are of most importance
(chapter 4.5). As done for education, we have also asked them to assess and comment on actual components
of the current policy. These findings are complemented by the discussions held during the FGDs, and during
interviews of key informants from training institutions (chapter 4.6). The last sub-chapter will then summarise
these findings and provide a few policy recommendations (chapter 4.7).
Employment and Vocatonal Training 41
4.2 National Policies for Vocational Training and Skill Development
The National Skill Development Policy 2011 (NSDP) was an outcome of the Technical & Vocational Education
& Training (TVET) Reform Project. This was a joint project by the Government of Bangladesh (GOB), the
European Commission (EC) and the International Labour Organization (ILO). The Ministry of Education (MOE)
is the line ministry responsible for its implementation. In addition, two further organisations are supporting
the ministry, namely the National Skill Development Council (NSDC) and the Bangladesh Technical Education
Board (BTEB). The core policy document points out that the policy was finalised after consultation with local
stakeholders, concerned government agencies and development partners. They state that it is a major
initiative to improve the coordination and delivery of skills in Bangladesh for the betterment of the nation as
a whole (GOB 2011a, 7). A crucial definition is that Skills development stands at the intersection of different
policy domains including education and training, non-formal education, labour, employment and industry
development (ibid., 9).
The National Skill Development Policy also extends and builds on other major government policies, such
as the Education Policy of 2009, the Non-Formal Education Policy of 2006, the Youth Policy of 2003, the
National Training Policy of 2008 and the NSDC Action Plan of 2008 (GOB 2011, 7). The policy will be further
supported by a revised National Skill Development Council (NSDC) Action Plan which will identify clear roles
and responsibilities for stakeholders within the following five years. The policy aims to address the needs of
a huge population by providing skills to enhance employability and secure safe and decent work (ibid.,
12). It specifically gives emphasis to youth as a key target group. The NSDP also addresses the problem that
many young people leave school before completing class VIII of general education and therefore fail to seek
admission in formal skill development programmes. Under the policy, specific steps will be taken to include
these students in the formal educational system. In addition, women will have equal access to both formal
and informal programmes. The policy also separately addresses working adolescents, and the need to provide
special classes so that they can take trainings and increase their employability. Of importance for governance
is that it also encourages enterprises to invest in education and training, and to support individuals to develop
their competencies and careers.
When elaborating on the current state of vocational and technical training in Bangladesh, the NSDP classifies
the existing organisations into four types, namely public, private, NGOs and industry based. The first one
is delivered mainly by several ministries and public institutes, as well as some from the private sector that
partly receive government subsidies, such as money payment orders (MPOs) and other types of grants. In
addition, there are other private institutes, such as commercial training institutes, operated by either the
private sector or religious bodies, such as madrassas. In addition, some not-for-profit institutions, mainly in
the form of NGOs, also provide vocational training, as do industry based enterprises, that offer training and
apprenticeships. In spite of this excessive variety of providers, their impact is usually limited as the various
component parts move in their own direction without a unifying vision. At the same time, there is no single
regulatory framework to provide a unified direction.
A further matter of concern from the policy makers is that there is no consistent approach to maintaining
quality. Similarly, existing standards mismatch with the occupations or skill levels of the current labour
market. Overall, curriculum development is highly centralised, rigid and time consuming and, above all,
not based on need. At the same time, the lack of proper coordination between the public sector and other
providers leads to a duplication of programmes and limited links between different training centres. At times,
42 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
this also leads to competition for the same target groups. Above all, there seems to be no clear picture of
what training is being provided for which industry or occupation. After the reform process, the Bangladesh
Skills Development System will comprise the National Technical & Vocational Qualifications Framework
(NTVQF), the Competency Based Industry Sector Standards & Qualifications and the Bangladesh Skills Quality
Assurance System.
Considering the demand for skilled workers in the national and international arena, the policy emphasises
vocational and technical education and training. It proposes many prerequisites and conditions to modernise
the existing system and to develop a competent skilled workforce. It proposes to introduce pre-vocational
and Information Communication Technology (ICT) curriculum in every stream of primary education and that
students can seek admission in a vocational/ technical institute after completing her/his primary education.
Once completing class VIII, students can take up a 6-month vocational training programme, and then she/
he will acquire the National Standard of Skills 1. Once completing classes IX, X and XII in vocational and
technical education, students can attain National Standard of Skills 2, 3 and 4, respectively. Those students
with technical diplomas will be eligible for admission in Bachelor and even Masters programmes of different
and relevant courses.
To expand technical education, technical institutions will be established in each upazilla besides increasing
the number of specialised ones. To improve the quality of teachers, the teachers have to take hands-on
training in mills and factories. One core policy component is that in these vocational and technical educational
institutions, the teacher-student ratio will be extremely low, at 1:12. The policy also mentions that the budget
will be allocated on priority basis in this sector and the government will encourage private-public partnership
(PPP) to establish or operate new institutions. On the other hand, overall budget allocations have been quite
low over the past decade, particularly when compared to secondary and higher secondary budget allocations
(see Figure 4.1)
Figure 4.1 Annual budgets for MOE (from development budget)
4.3 Young People and their Integration into the Labour Market
As argued above, the integration of youth into regular and moderately decently paid labour markets is a
crucial challenge, for both the youth and their families as well as for the government. Overall, the integration
of young people faces two major challenges. One is the age of integration, and the second one is the low
level of wages, at least for some (see also Hettige and Mayer 2002, Hettige 2012 and Ranasinghe 2012; see
also Furlong 2009c). In regard to the integration into the labour market, there are two extreme cases. Youth
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
2004/05 2005/06 2006/07 2007/08 2008/09
Second./Higher Sec.& College Education
EED
Technical and Vocational Education
Univ. Grants Comm.
[
i
n

c
r
o
r
e

t
a
k
a
]
Employment and Vocatonal Training 43
with higher educational achievements often have a substantial time gap between completing education
and starting their first employment. The other extreme is that youth, or rather (pre-) teenagers, drop out
of education and instantly start working. Overall, only 32.4 per cent of all youth in the BYS sample had any
experience of work, whether paid or unpaid. As stated in the education section, nearly 35 per cent among all
youth were still engaged in education and 27.6 per cent responded that they were currently engaged in paid
work or employment (i.e. 1,820 persons). Among the others, an extremely large group among the women
were housewives. Interestingly, only 3 per cent classified themselves as unemployed (in addition to 5 per cent
where no answer was given), a figure that is substantially lower in other parts of South Asia (see Ratnasinghe
2012 for Sri Lanka).
Overall, these figures were characterised by substantial gender disparities. While the proportion of working
and employed persons was 49 per cent among men it was only 6 per cent among women. Among the latter,
57 per cent classified themselves as housewives. The integration into the labour market has, logically, also a
strong age pattern. While among the youngest group (15-19 year olds) less than 20 per cent were currently
working, this rate gradually increases to nearly 45 per cent for the oldest age group (25-30). When asked about
their previous work experience, only 13 per cent among the women stated that they have any experience of
working, whether paid or unpaid. As most of them have categorised themselves as housewives this answer
is methodologically (and epistemologically) quite tricky. We would argue that this is a typical case of under-
reporting of work. As marriage takes place at a rather early age (see chapter 2.4), this is even the case among
women of younger age groups (see Figure 4.2).
One rather peculiar pattern is that unemployment, or rather the perception of it, is not as high as we would
have expected. On average, it is even less than 4 per cent among young men, and even less than 2 per cent
among women (see Figure 4.3, note that the scale is 50 per cent only, to capture the patterns). The age pattern
shows that unemployment also increases along the age groups. Overall, we interpret these data in a way that
underemployment, rather than employment is likely to be the more decisive phenomenon for these young
people.
Figure 4.2 Experience of regular work (based Figure 4.3 Experience (or perception) of
on gender and age groups) unemployment
When analysing the sectors where young people are employed, this, overall, reflects the composition of both
rural and urban labour markets in the country. Among all categories, self-employed, in both agriculture and
non-agriculture, had the highest sectoral proportions, of nearly 18 per cent among men. In addition, about
9 per cent were engaged in agriculture, followed by non-government service holders, industrial workers and
daily wage labourers (at about 4-5 per cent each; see Figure 4.4).
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
15 to 19
20 to 24
25 to 30
student
working
housewife
unemployed
n.a.
Male
Female
corp. City
Urban
Rural
Male
Female
15-19
20-24
25-30
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
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G
e
n
d
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r
A
g
e
0 10 20 30 40 50
yes
no
44 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
In addition to a sectoral analysis, salaries/wages are quite crucial. Among those currently employed, 14 per
cent have incomes of less than 2000 Taka, and are thus far below subsistence needs. Sector-wise, these lowly
paid work and employment opportunities are prevalent in all sectors. In agriculture the largest income
group is in the 2000 to 5000 Taka category, as is also the case for services, other than the public sector. Among
those engaged in trade, incomes are significantly higher, and the income distribution is nearly equal for the
three middle income groups (5000 to 7500 Taka, 7500 to 10,000 Tk and above 10,000 Taka). Overall, there are
vast gender disparities for wages, whereas nearly half of all women have monthly wages/salaries of less than
2000 Taka, less than 3 per cent of all men do so. At the other end of the income scale, nearly 15 per cent of all
men have salaries above 7,500 Taka, and nearly 10 per cent higher than 15,000 Taka, whereas this cumulative
share among women is not even 1 per cent (see Figure 4.5).
Similarly, when investigating into their employment histories, quite a number of the young people needed
to start off with quite low wages or salaries (see Figure 4.6). Although the considerable time span, of up to 15
years, might give rise to distortions, gender disparities are again quite substantial. Again, 44 per cent of all
women have started their first jobs in the lowest income group, compared to only 14 per cent of all men. At
the same time, the BYS data also documents a promisingly large number of women in higher income groups,
of more than 7,500 Taka (nearly 10 per cent), and some of these even had salaries of more than 15,000 Taka.
Yet, many of these women have stopped working, as is apparent from total numbers. While currently 270
women are working, the total number of women with work experience is considerably higher, at 368 persons.
Figure 4.4 Sectoral employment of the youth (by gender)
Figure 4.5 Incomes for current employment Figure 4.6 Incomes for frst-ever work/
(by gender) employment (by gender)

0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700
Self employed (agriculture)
Self-employed (non-agri)/business
Day-labourer (agriculture)
Day labourer (non-agriculture)
Rickshaw/van puller/Bus driver/Truck
Industrial worker
Regular job holder (govt.)
Regular job holder (non-govt.)
Unemployed
Irregular service-holder (govt./non-govt.)
Professionals (NGO, teachers)
total no. of respondents
mal e
f emal e
0 200 400 600
< 2001
2000 - 5000
5000 - 7500
7500 - 15000
above 15000
number of cases
mal e
f emal e

0 200 400 600 800 1000
< 2001
2000 - 5000
5000 - 7500
7500 - 15000
above 15000
mal e
f emal e
Besides a sectoral analysis of work and employment, a core indicator for assessing integration into labour
markets is the age of joining the labour force. Based on ILO and other international conventions, children and
adolescents should only be allowed to work from the age of 18 onwards, and partially between the ages of 16
and 18. At the same time, these international conventions and policy guidelines have little relevance for most
South Asian countries, and irrespective of the sectors. In a society where many children have left school by
the age of 14, it is questionable what they are supposed to do prior to reaching the age of 18. Overall, the BYS
documents a critically high number of youth who had taken up work at an age of less than 14. This also has
a pronounced regional pattern, and in some of the districts (such as Chuadanga, Jessore, and Sunamganj)
this is the case for about half of all youth. In some other districts, absolute numbers are quite high, although
the relative share is only 20 to 30 per cent (such as Comilla, Rangpur, Mymensingh). At the same time, these
cases have declined considerably over the past decade.

Figure 4.7 Age of starting frst paid/unpaid work (district level)
0 25 50 75 100
Chuadanga
Jessore
Comilla
Rajshahi
Sirajganj
Sunamganj
Rangpur
Dinajpur
Joypurhat
Mymensingh
Maulvibazar
Chapal
Narail
Coxs Bazar
Chittagong
Narayanganj
Gazipur
Faridpur
Brahmanabari
Gaibandha
Thakurgaon
Satkhira
Kishoregonj
Chandpur
Nilphamari
Panchagar
Meherpur
Sherpur
Gopalganj
Kurigram
Khagrachhari
Lakshmipur
Sylhet
Habiganj
Bogra
Naogaon
Natore
Jhenaidah
Magura
Madaripur
Rangamati
Pabna
Khulna
Narsingdi
Barguna
Barisal
Lalmonirhat
Manikganj
Noakhali
Feni
Bhola
Jhalokati
Kushtia
Bagerhat
Rajbari
Netrakona
Shariatpur
Munshiganj
Jamalpur
Bandarban
Patuakhali
Tangail
Pirojpur
< 14
15 - 16
17 - 18
19 - 24
>25
Employment and Vocatonal Training 45
One classical field of investigation in youth surveys is the question of the preferred types of employment
(or rather work, in most cases). Overall, there is a strong preference for the public sector, and this is a typical
pattern for most countries in the region (see also Hettige and Mayer 2002, Hettige 2009 and Ratnasinghe
2012). A comparatively small number of youth prefer to be either self-employed (15 to 20 per cent) or, less
prominently, work in private companies. Interestingly, employment in NGOs is only mentioned by a small
minority (of less than 5 per cent). In addition to this overall pattern, there is quite a strong age pattern. One
obvious pattern is that the attraction of being employed in the public sector decreases quite significantly once
the youth get older. While more than 60 per cent among the youngest age group (15 to 20) see this as their first
priority it is only about 35 per cent among the older age group. We interpret this trend as a growing sense
of realising what is realistically possible. At the same time, family as an option increased quite significantly.
Nearly 30 per cent of the women (see Figure 4.8), and 50 per cent of the older women, have opted for this.
While our understanding of this question referred to family business many female respondents might have
interpreted this as being housewives.
An interesting piece of information was also obtained from asking how they found their current jobs. A large
number stated that it was through their families, and for some via friends (see Figure 4.9). Regarding labour
migration, there is a strong pattern about plans for migration, both for women and men. Again, there are
pronounced gender disparities, while a large majority of women consider migration within Bangladesh (50 per
cent), for men this share is much smaller (less than 30 per cent) and many of them consider foreign countries
as their potential destination, either Gulf (at 25 per cent) or Western countries. Among the different localities,
urban residents have a strong tendency to migrate within Bangladesh, whereas men from rural areas tend to
assess the Gulf region as one of their most likely destinations.
Figure 4.8 Preferred type of work (based on gender and age groups)
Figure 4.9 Actual access to current employment
46 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
15-19
20-24
25-30
Male
Female
A
g
e
G
e
n
d
e
r
family
government
NGO
private company
self-employed
others
0 20 40 60 80 100

0 20 40 60 80 100
Citycorp.
Urban
Rural
Female
15-19
20-24
25-30
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
G
e
n
d
e
r
A
g
e
family
friends
political afliation
youth groups
advertisement
other
Male
4.4 Young People and their Vocational Training and Skills
Vocational and technical training have been treated as quite crucial aspects of personal and economic
development in the current National Skill Development Policy. Yet, the actual experiences of young people in
regard to vocational and technical training are quite limited. Overall, merely 7 per cent among the youth have
had any experience in this field. Among these, there are pronounced patterns that youth in city corporations
are most likely to have had training, and much less so in other urban or rural areas (11 per cent, versus 8 and
6 per cent, respectively; see Figure 4.10). Slightly lower disparities exist for gender, although disparities are
much lower than we would have thought (at more than 8 versus less than 6 per cent).
When considering age groups, there is an inconsistent pattern, at first sight. While the older youth (25-30)
are less likely to have undergone V&T training, the middle age group (20-24) is substantially more likely to
have done so (at more than 7 versus more than 9 per cent; see Figure 4.11). Yet, among the older ones, it is
mainly women who have no experience, while this has changed quite considerably. While this could reflect
current policy changes it is also obvious that among the youngest group the proportion is much lower
than for any of the older ones. This could imply that vocational training is generally of interest at a later age.
Another astonishing piece of information is that the likelihood of having undergone V&T training clearly
increases along with higher incomes (see Figure 4.10). If so, then the target of poverty alleviation would be
questionable and budgets might have been mis-invested. On the other hand, the higher incomes of those
who had undergone V&T training could also be interpreted as an outcome of these V&T activities - and thus
a clear indicator for success. Yet, overall it has to be kept in mind that until today, V&T training has not been
taken up by young people on any meaningful scale.
Among those who have undergone V&T training, the single largest group was in computer typing, and this
had a high level of participation even in rural areas. At the same time, this might be seen as a minor, although
important, technical skill rather than vocational training, as such. In addition, the 200 persons who have
mentioned this merely account for 3 per cent of our total sample, and three quarters among them were men.
The second largest training group was in tailoring (120 persons), and this was fairly evenly distributed across
all three types of localities, city corporation, other urban areas as well as rural areas. In terms of gender, this
type of training was predominantly made by women, although about 20 per cent among the trainees was
male. A few other types of training had been done by one or two dozens, others even less. Among the more
common ones are electrical training (36), livestock rearing (16), and fish farming (12). Yet, as argued before, the
lack of T&V training might also partly reflect the lack of recognition of informal training as a form of training.
Figure 4.10 Youth who have participated in V&T Figure 4.11 Youth who have participated in V&T
Training (by locality and income groups) Training (by gender and age groups)
0
5
10
15
20
25
15 17 19 21 23 25 27 29
p
e
r
c
e
n
t

o
f

a
g
e

g
r
o
u
p
women
men
City corporation
Urban
Rural
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
yes
no
0 10 20 30 40 50
Employment and Vocatonal Training 47
48 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
4.5 Assessing the Vocational Training Policy - A Call for Public Private Partnership
The provision of vocational training has been stated as a clear priority in the revised Education Policy (2009),
as well as in the National Skill Development Policy (2011). Among the youth, there is a wide acceptance of
the importance of vocational training, indeed much wider than we would have thought. At the same time,
there are some contradictions when assessing the target groups. The list proposed by us includes that it
should be mandatory for all. As an alternative, we have suggested targeting less educated people only, or
the agricultural labour force, or those with plans to migrate. About two thirds agreed (or even highly agreed)
that vocational training is only important for less educated people, and this was a consistent pattern across all
income groups. At the same time, there was also an even stronger agreement on making vocational training
mandatory for all (of more than 80 per cent, two thirds of these in the highly agree category; see Figure
4.12). As has been argued above, this inconsistency could be due to the tendency to select the agree option
for many questions (see also 1.4, methodology).
In spite of these inconsistencies, young people have a clear understanding that vocational training is not
only of benefit for particular occupational groups, such as the agricultural labour force. Indeed, there was an
astonishingly open-stated opposition (disagree or even highly disagree) to this question, of around 70
per cent. Similarly, the respondents also disagreed on the suggestion that vocational training was mainly of
importance for the urban labour force or for those who plan to engage in labour migration (see Figure 4.12.).
Figure 4.12 Assessing the need for vocational training
Figure 4.13 Priorities for vocational training policies

0 25 50 75 100
City corp.
Urban
Rural
Male
Female
15-19
20-24
25-30
< 5000
5 - 7,500
7,5 - 10,000
10 - 15,000
> 15001
l
o
c
a
t
i
o
n

g
e
n
d
e
r
a
g
e

i
n
c
o
m
e
s
highly agree
somewhat agree
somewhat disagree
highly disagree
do not know
0 20 40 60 80 100
More teachers
More hours for V&Ttraining
Start Y&T training in earlier classes
More practical lessons
Revise curriculum
Placements in private companies
highly agree
somewhat agree
somewhat disagree
highly disagree
do not know
In order to assess policies in regard to vocational training, and how to improve these policies, we have
included a list of six policy components. Overall, there was a strong agreement on most of these measures.
One policy measure that had the highest level of agreement of nearly 95 per cent, was the suggestion for
placements in private companies (80 per cent among these even highly agreed). On the other hand, fewer
young people agreed on the need to revise the curriculum. Disparities, whether by gender, locality or income
groups, were quite low.
4.6 Vocational Training and Labour Markets Some Policy Recommendations
For the strengthening of economic development, the integration of the young generation into the national
(and international) labour market is quite instrumental. Policy makers tend to point out the demographic
dividend but also address young people in rather functionalistic and even strategic language and point out
the need for skill development in order to secure their positions in the labour market. At the same time, the
educational and vocational policies have, so far, yet to achieve these goals. A large number of youth from
lower income households has neither completed a moderately acceptable level of education nor undergone
vocational training, on any meaningful scale.
Overall, there is a considerable gap in the integration of young people into the labour market. Young women
in particular tend to stay at home. Although this might be a life cycle phenomenon, we would be careful
to interpret it as such. At the same time, we would also hesitate to apply Western norms, where womens
integration into the labour market is presumed as a global standard. Overall, for future youth surveys, both in
Bangladesh and elsewhere in the region, this will be a vital topic to capture. In order to do this, a more detailed
methodology needs to be designed, specifying how these young women see their possible integration into
the labour market, and how decision making processes about this integration within the household are being
carried out. When conceptualising training modules for technical and vocational training these also need to
be tailored to their needs.
Irrespective of gender, most young people have voiced great difficulties in finding appropriate employment.
For many, the current employment status is self-employed. While this is positive, at first sight, we are also
aware that this could disguise a more or less substantial level of underemployment, or even unemployment.
For many lowly educated persons, both men and women, the integration into the labour market is also
characterised by extremely low levels of income, whether in Ready Made Garment (RMG) or at any other
industry. For more highly educated persons and students, again both men and women, there is the need
to increase options for accessing employment, and the public sector should be only one among many other
options. Overall, there need to be much closer linkages between educational institutions, and vocational
training ones, and business companies.
On the part of the government, the core responsibility should be to facilitate and strengthen these linkages,
rather than taking up the responsibility of actually delivering these services. One way of doing so could be
financial incentives, in the form of tax incentives for those companies that are willing to accept young job
entrants with moderate remunerations, at least covering subsistence needs. Yet again, there is the urgent need
to make these integrations socially accessible, and not misuse these budgets as a (state) subsidy accessible
only to those with pronounced family and/or political links.
Employment and Vocatonal Training 49
50 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
C

H

A

P

T

E

R
5
Bangladeshs Young Citizens
Dhaka University XI/2008
52 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
5.1 Bangladeshs Young Citizens - An Introduction
Young people are considered to be one of the most powerful forces in bringing about political and social
change in a country, and last years revolutions across Northern Africa and the Arab World have demonstrated
this quite vividly. Across the South Asian region, substantial support from youth groups is essential for any
party to win elections, whether at the national or local level. Students unions and youth wings of the parties
are considered to be an extremely important component of the mainstream political parties. At the same
time, youth engagement is usually associated with students from colleges and universities, and thus more
or less pronounced elite groups, at least in some countries (for details see chapter 3.3, above). Yet, a large
majority of youth does not even reach class X, let alone take up higher secondary education or studying.
While in European countries, political engagement among employees and workers is organised in the form
of trade unions from their internal sources, in Bangladesh, as elsewhere in the region, this is usually done by
persons from outside. In addition, links to party politics are the guiding principle, and thus these unionists
may represent the interests of the workers often only partially.
From our vantage point of aiming at strengthening governance for youth policies, it was quite crucial to gain
more knowledge about how Bangladeshi youth view politics. This needs to address both their understanding
of themselves as young citizens, with a comprehensive set of rights and duties, towards the state and
communities (see also deSouza et al. 2009, 47ff, Amarasinghe 2012; see also Flanagan 2009 and Harris 2009).
At the core of political participation, registration as a voter and participation in elections is quite important.
One aspect of interest was to try to get an understanding about the decision making processes as to whom to
vote for, as well as perceptions about the political engagement of youth, and students in particular.
When investigating the political ideas of youth, there is also a need to address their perception of the state
and core institutions of the state. For the latter, the policies that are of immediate relevance to them are quite
crucial, such as education, vocational training and skill development, as well as labour market policies. In
addition, we have also included the current Awami Leagues policy of Digital Bangladesh. Although this
does not explicitly focus on young citizens, these are, at the same time, implicitly the ones that are to profit
most significantly from this policy. One further aspect of this chapter is also to take up a few core topics of IGS
past public perception surveys (IGS 2008 and 2009) and the Governance Barometer Survey 2010 (Aziz and
Graner 2011). In order to allow for comparisons, this includes a few questions about current assessments of
the performance of the government, level of satisfaction with key institutions (such as the ACC, the military,
the police), as well as perceptions about corruption. This is followed by a sub-section on law and order and on
the perception of crimes. As in last years Governance Barometer Survey, we have also asked the youth about
their understanding of democracy, more broadly.
5.2 Youth as Politically Active Citizens
When analysing governance aspects of political participation, one crucial pre-condition for any type of active
political participation is to be, or rather to get, registered as a voter. In most countries the state defines the
age for registering as a voter at 18, and this is also the rule laid down in the Constitution of Bangladesh (GOB
1974, Article 122b). Yet, there are substantial gaps in getting this registration, and while gender disparities are
quite low, regional disparities are much more pronounced. Overall, a majority of more than 70 per cent of all
eligible youth (18-30) was registered as voters, and registration was even higher among women (nearly 74
Bangladeshs Young Citzens 53
versus 69 per cent for women and men, respectively). At the same time, young people usually take some time
in getting registered, and many among the 18 to 20 year-olds have not yet done so.
More concerningly even among those aged 21 only about two thirds have registered by now. Similarly,
registration was about 70 and 80 per cent among those aged 22 and 23, respectively (see Figure 5.1). This clearly
documents that a considerably large number of them has not participated during the last national election in
December 2008, although they could have done so. Only among those aged 24 and above, registration as voters
was higher than 90 per cent, but there was no single age group where it was universal. When disaggregating
the registration of voters at a district-level, there is no clear pattern. Registration among those who are 20 and
older was 90 per cent and above in 15 districts, across the country. At the same time, there are a number of
districts where registration is below 80 per cent, and two districts with extremely low rates are Tangail and
Shariatpur (as well as Jamalpur and Sirajganj; see Figure 5.3, below).
In order to analyse participation during the last national election in December 2008, we have further filtered
(or dis-aggregated) our data set to include only youth who had reached 18 by then, and thus 21 or older when
the BYS was carried out in December 2011. Among those, quite a high number of 89 per cent voted in at least
one national election. Overall, 28 per cent had voted in two (25 per cent) or even more (3 per cent) national
elections (see Figure 5.2). In regard to local elections (either union parishad, upazilla or municipal/ pourashava
elections), participation is similarly high, at 88 per cent. Among those, 57 per cent have participated in only
one local election, in addition to 25 per cent who have already voted in two and 6 per cent who participated
in three or more local level elections.
Figure 5.1 Age composition of young registered (non-)voters
Figure 5.2 Age composition and election participation of young
voters in the last national election (December 2008)
400 300 200 100 0 100 200 300 400
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
a
g
e

g
r
o
u
p
s
number of cases
male (registered)
females (registered)
(fe)male (not reg.)
400 300 200 100 0 100 200 300 400
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
total number of male and f emale voters
a
g
e

g
r
o
u
p
s
male (once)
male (twice)
male (3 times)
f emale (once)
f emale (twice)
f emale (3 times)

Figure 5.3 Registration of young voters (20 and older, district-level)
A crucial question for us was to find out about the affiliation of young people to any particular political party.
Only 2 per cent of the respondents stated that they are members of political parties. Although these data
confirm the findings from the British Councils study The Next Generation (at one per cent; ibid. 2010, 15)
we somehow assume that this number is underreported and that respondents are reluctant to disclose
their involvement with any political party. At the same time, we also asked about the membership in other
groups, such as youth groups or cultural groups. Again, percentages have been only three and two per cent,
respectively. One possible explanation for this lack in participation could be due to the formulation of these
questions, in the questionnaire and/or during the interview. This could have been misleading, and the term
engagement could have been too formal for most respondents. Among those who stated their involvement
with political parties, the average duration of doing so was 5 years, and thus slightly longer than 4 years for
involvement in youth groups, and similarly long for those who are involved in social and cultural groups (4.9
years).
54 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
cartography: Graner 2012
data source: IGS Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011
Dhaka
Tangail
B A N G L A D E S H
Registration as voters
(BYS 2011)
voters
non voters
(n= 3913, aged 20 plus)
0 50 100
km
263
Hobiganj
Sunamganj
Netrakona
Mymensingh
Kishoreganj
Jamalpur
Bogra
Narsingd
Moulvi Bazar
Manikganj
Gazipur
Narayanganj
Munshiganj
Comilla
Brahmanbaria
Chandpur
Shariatpur
Feni
Rangamati
Noakhali
Lakshmipur
Khagrachari
Barisal
Gopaljanj
Madaripur
Chittagong
Coxs Bazar
Barguna
Patuakhali
Bhola
Bagerhat
Perojpur
Khulna
Satkhira
Jessore
Narail
Magura
Rajbari
Chuadanga
Kushtia
Pabna
Meherpur
Sirajganj
Natore
Nawabganj
Naogaon
Jaipurhat
Gaibandha
Sherpur
Dinajpur
Thakurgaon
Panchagarh
Nilphamari
Lalmonirhat
Rangpur
Kurigram
Jhenaidah
Chandpur
Faridpur
Jhalakati
Bandarban
Rajshahi
Sylhet
When asked about the involvement that students should have in politics, there was a strong consensus
that students should participate as voters. Supporting candidates and becoming candidates was also
favoured, although mainly to some extent and not to a large extent. On the other hand, there was quite
a pronounced opposition towards rallies, and even more so towards hartals (see Figure 5.4). Overall, there
is also quite a strong opposition towards student politics. While a majority of young people support the
need to get involved in youth politics (about 50 to 80 per cent), student politics is seen much more critically.
There, the level of agreement is only about 15 to 22 per cent. When analysing the age pattern for these two
aspects, levels of agreement are highest among the 20 to 25-year olds and among the 27-28 year olds, and
considerably lower among the younger and older ones (see Figure 5.5)
Figure 5.4 Forms of participation of students in politics Figure 5.5 Participation in youth politics and
student politics (by age)
5.3 Assessing Fair Elections and Deciding Whom to Vote For
Holding free and fair elections has always been a challenge for Bangladesh. To stabilise this crucial process,
the idea of the caretaker government was introduced in 1996, in order to avoid the dominance of the ruling
party or parties. When the current Awami League government decided to abolish the caretaker government
in July 2011 and declared that the up-coming elections should (or will) be held under the ruling party, there
was strong opposition, both from the major opposition BNP and from civil society (see Odhikar 2011, Human
Rights Monitoring Report; Daily Star 2011). Several opinion polls, such as Daily Star Nielsen in December
2011, or Prothom Alo (2011), have already shown that people prefer elections to be held under an interim
Caretaker Government. Without taking up this debate, we asked the youth which are the factors that for
them define free and fair elections. These included a strong role of the Election Commission and also a sub-
set of three questions for defining the code of conduct. The latter include that parties respect each other, a
mandatory disclosure of budgets, and that only candidates without a criminal record could participate.
Among these, two aspects received an overwhelmingly strong level of agreement, namely the strong role
of the Election Commission, with nearly 80 per cent of highly agree- level and an additional 17 per cent in
the somewhat agree level (i.e. a total agreement of more than 95 per cent). Nearly as much agreement was
given for the parties respect for each other (91 per cent, but a lower proportion in the highest level). Other
aspects were supported, but much less strong. On the other hand, young people showed strong concerns
about having the elections held under the ruling party, although only 46 per cent of the respondents either
strongly or somewhat disagreed. When seen together, demanding a strong Election Commission and not
Bangladeshs Young Citzens 55

Campaign
Supporting leaders
Rallies
Hartals
By voting
Becoming candidates
to a large extent
to some extent
to limited extent
very limited extent
0 20 40 60 80 100
0
20
40
60
80
100
15 17 19 21 23 25 27 29
youth pol i ti cs
student pol i ti cs
disagreeing on elections held under the ruling party seem to be contradictory. Either people believe that
a strong role of the Election Commission is expected and people perceive that this is not possible under a
political government. Alternatively, if a strong role of the Election Commission can be ensured, people will
find elections much more credible. In all the opinions, the regional and gender variations are not pronounced,
although young women and people living in rural areas are generally more supportive than men and youth
living in urban areas. Yet, one aspect where gender disparities were quite substantial was the disagreement
with elections held by the ruling party. There, the opposition from men was much more outspoken, with
nearly 40 per cent at the highly disagree level, compared to less than 20 per cent among women.
Figure 5.6 Criteria for defning fair elections
One quite interesting sub-set of questions inquired about the importance of factors that should influence
the decision making process about voting. The criteria we suggested also included whether or not a party
has a good manifesto and political leaders, or whether they consider local issues or issues related to youth. In
addition, we had added some rather provocative statements, such as suggestions made by family and friends,
but also whether a party is likely to win the elections. The most obvious pattern was that local issues and youth
issues were considered most important (with highly agree of more than 70 and 80 per cent, respectively).
The aspects of strongest disagreements were suggestions made by friends, and, somehow astonishingly,
by other family members (with 70 and 50 per cent who highly disagree, respectively). Compared to these
figures, the aspects of probability of winning the election only received a moderate level of disagreement
(see Figure 5.7).
As stated earlier, when we designed the questionnaire we were quite aware of the risk that many among
the youth would generally tend to opt for highly important for whatever questions we might ask. One way
of counter-balancing this tendency and getting more nuanced answers was to rank these options. This has
been done for a few core questions, such as the one on voting decisions. Among all factors, respondents think
that whether a party considers the interest of youth should be the most important determinant for voting,
followed by a partys interest in addressing local issues (52 and 45 per cent, respectively). When ranked, the
importance of youth issues was an even more dominant criteria (at 29, 28 and 19 per cent for being the first,
second and third most important factor, respectively). Although the aspect of considering local issues has a
similar overall share, this is mainly due to a high percentage of third priority, and not first. When assessing
these rankings at weighted proportions, as done last year, the emphasis on the first matter would have
been even more pronounced. Similarly, the partys manifesto is also listed as an important factor (at ca. 50
cumulative per cent), but again this is mainly due to second and third priorities (see Figure 5.8).
56 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011

0 20 40 60 80 100
Strong role of election commission
Parties respect each other
Held by ruling party
Candidates with no criminal record
Mandatory budget disclosure
highly agree
somewhat agree
somewhat disagree
highly disagree
do not know
Based on these answers we thought that it might be an interesting exercise to correlate these to actual voting
behaviour. Yet, when cross tabulating the two parameters, have you always voted for the same party and
the importance of party affiliation of a candidate, the result does not show any particular pattern. Although
a small majority of those who have always voted for the same party stated that party affiliation should be
considered for voting, another 45 per cent either strongly or somewhat disagreed. Interestingly, the same
proportions also apply for those who did not vote for the same party.
Figure 5.7 Criteria for deciding whom Figure 5.8 Criteria for deciding whom to
to vote for (levels of agreements) vote for (ranked according to importance)
5.4 Defining Democracy
One of the main objectives of our survey was to assess how youth define democracy. As done in the last
years Governance Barometer Survey, we have again provided five definitions for democracy and asked the
respondents to rank the top three according to importance. Among political scientists, Dalton et al. (2007)
argued that, generally speaking, survey responses on democracy can be grouped into three different types.
The two major ones are to understand democracy as an outcome and to see democracy as a process. In
addition, some surveys also define democracy also as social benefit, as for instance related to the fulfillment
of basic needs, particularly in low income countries (ibid., 145/46). When following this typology, the majority
of youth in Bangladesh views democracy as a process.
Following our last opinion surveys, the definitions for democracy have included 1) elections every five years,
2) rule by consent, 3) free public debates, 4) participation in decision making, and 5) access to information
on how the government works. Whereas last year, respondents were asked to rank all five, this year we
only allowed for three answers, in form of first, second and third priorities. Overall, our survey reflects that
Bangladeshi youths perceptions about democracy are mainly defined by having free and fair elections. When
ranked, this was given first priority by an overwhelming majority of 65 per cent, in addition to 18 per cent who
ranked it either second (8 per cent) or third (10 per cent). Among all other options, rule by consent and access
to information have been top priorities, while free public debates got the highest percentage as second most
important factor. Again, access to information got the highest support as third ranked option (38 per cent;
see Figure 5.9). Among all options, free public debate as a core feature of democracy got the lowest ranked
percentage (at 26 percentage points).
Bangladeshs Young Citzens 57

0 20 40 60 80 100
Party afliation
Poltical leaders
Family suggestion
Friends suggestion
Personal relationship
Party's focus on youth interest
Manifesto
Local issue
Probabililty of wining
highlyagree
somewhat agree
somewhat disagree
highlydisagree
do not know
0 20 40 60 80 100
rank 1
rank 2
rank 3
58 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
When comparing these results to last years Governance Barometer Survey elections every five years was
also the most preferred option last year. On the other hand, the ranking of other responses has changed over
the years and of course across groups. Overall, young citizens seem to be more concerned about the free flow
of information, and thus they have ranked ability to access information on how the government works as
the second definition of democracy. Interestingly, last year this option was ranked last. This year, the middle
options rule by consent and participate in decision making and free public debate were ranked lowest,
and overall agreement was mainly due to rank 2, particularly for free public debate (see Figure 5.9). Again,
if weighted and indexed, the first definition, having regular elections, would get an even stronger consensus.
Access to information, on the other hand, would be weighted quite low, as more than half was based on a
third rank only.
Figure 5.9 Defning democracy (based on ranked answers)
5.5 The Role of Media in Learning about the State
Access to information is viewed as one of the preconditions of ensuring participation in the democratic
process. For doing so, media plays an essential role in collecting and disseminating information to citizens.
Kim et al. (2003) argue that media has a strong role to play in creating the opinion climate, i.e. to influence
the public perception about political agents and events, but also to voice their disagreement and to demand
changes. At the same time, an effective media also has the function to regularly inform the policy makers
about the nations policy and development needs (Hudock 2003, 34; see also Temin and Smith 2002 or Ali
2006). For this chapter on young citizens, it is quite important to learn more about their sources of information
about the state. We have listed several types of media and asked them to assess the importance as a source
of information regarding the state.
All respondents unequivocally accepted the role of news on television channels and newspapers as major
sources of information about the state (85 per cent and 83 per cent respectively mentioned them as highly
important and even 98 per cent for highly and somewhat important when combined). Interestingly, the third
most important option is schools, although at more than 20 per centage points less (60 per cent highly agree),
followed by radio. Overall, the least important factors are clubs. Political parties and talking to friends have
received almost the same percentage of high agreement, whereas talking to friends receives much support as
a somewhat important factor. Websites were mentioned as highly important by 30 per cent and somewhat
important by another 35 per cent. At the same time, there is a pronounced number of youth who have stated

Access information on how govt. works
Participate in decision making
Free public debate
Rule by consent
Election every fve years
0 20 40 60 80 100
rank 1
rank 2
rank 3
that they can not say (11 per cent), an aspect which we will take up later in the section about the digital
generation section (see chapter 6.3, below).
Overall, the disparities, whether based on gender, locality, social groups or even districts, are much lower
than we would have thought. There are no pronounced gender variations, except for two cases, namely
websites (38 per cent versus 32 per cent for men and women, respectively) and talking to friends (29 per cent
versus 21 per cent). Overall, rural-urban or socio-economic variations are neither pronounced. While these
general assessments about the importance of different types of media show quite an optimistic picture about
the interests of youth in the state, we also feel the need to question some of these statements. The overall
importance of TV news might not reflect actual utilisation pattern, whether youth can actually watch TV, or
even have electricity in their homes.
Similarly, the importance of reading the newspaper is also not reflected in their weekly leisure activities. This
argument is even of higher relevance for internet utilisation, as will be discussed in more detail (see chapter
6.3, below). Overall, the analysis of other sections of the data base, and particularly leisure activities and
the role of media, shows that these assessments have no direct link to whether or not youth actually utilise
particular means of information. To have more information about these issues, it would be quite important
for future surveys to include more specific questions and to analyse these in (much) more detail. Overall, this
would also be quite an important aspect for ranking, in order to refine this crucial understanding.
Figure 5.10 Role of Media in learning about the state
5.6 Performance of Institutions
Effective institutions, in the sense of political bodies set up to deliver services, are necessary for having
a government which performs well. How people evaluate the performance of a government depends by
and large on how well functioning its institutions are. Based on this premise, we have included this set of
questions in all of our past perceptions surveys, including the Governance Barometer Survey and the current
Bangladesh Youth Survey. Following the past surveys, we have included eight core bodies, namely Members
of Parliament (MPs) and Local Government Representatives, the Judiciary and village courts (shalish), the
military and the police, as well as the Election Commission (EC) and the Anti-Corruption Commision (ACC).
Overall, there is an overwhelmingly positive feedback about viewing the military as the one with the highest
Bangladeshs Young Citzens 59
School
Newspaper
Radio
News on TV
Websites
Talking to friends
Youth clubs
Any other clubs
Political parties
0 20 40 60 80 100
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
can not say
60 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
level of satisfaction (with 92 per cent of support), followed by Local Government institutions (83 per cent), the
Election Commission and shalish (local arbitration committees), at 79 and 77 per cent, respectively. Overall,
the military was assessed with the widest acceptance in the highest level category (very satisfied, see Figure
5.11, below).
At the other extreme, dissatisfaction is highest towards the police, who topped at 45 per cent dissatisfaction
(combining very dissatisfied and somewhat dissatisfied). This was followed by Members of Parliament (32
per cent) and the Judiciary (25 per cent). Further disaggregations by experience show that those who have
had any experience in dealing with the police during the past three years report a significantly higher level
of dissatisfaction (67 per cent), compared to those without experience (42 per cent). This pattern is similar for
MPs and the Judiciary, as well. Overall, these findings have been quite similar to the ones from our last years
Governance Barometer Survey (see Aziz and Graner 2011, 87) and have also been confirmed by a recent
survey conducted by the Daily Star and Nielsen (ibid.). In the latter, a low satisfaction with the police was
followed by the Judiciary and Parliament.
When the data is disaggregated by gender and locality, female respondents and respondents living in rural
areas generally reported a higher level of satisfaction, compared to males and respondents living in urban areas
and in city corporations. The dissatisfaction in regard to the police had an average level of about 25 per cent.
At the same time, this aspect also had some quite pronounced regional patterns, as has already been shown
in last years Governance Barometer Survey. In some of the districts the level of dissatisfaction was as high as
40 to 50 per cent, as for instance in Gaibanda, Rangpur, Kurigram, Banderban, Moulvi Bazar, Nilphamari. As
was shown last year, many of these are border districts (see Figure 5.13). In regard to gender disparities, there
was a strong gender pattern for MPs, where men voiced a much stronger level of dissatisfaction than women,
at 40 versus 24 per cent. For MPs, the level of satisfaction was much lower in city corporations, although
dissatisfaction was not significantly higher (see Figure 5.12, below).
Figure 5.11 (Dis-)Satisfaction with key institutions
Figure 5.12 (Dis-)Satisfaction regarding MPs (by
gender and locality)



Figure 5.13 (Dis-)Satisfaction regarding the police
(district-level)
5.7 Perceptions about Corruption and Crime
As a follow-up to last years Governance Barometer Survey, we have again included a section about
perceptions of corruption. The results show quite a high correlation to the ones regarding satisfaction with
core institutions, in general. Thus, among all institutions, the Bangladesh police was perceived as the most
corrupt entity (with 55 per cent in the highly corrupt and an additional 32 per cent in the somewhat corrupt
category) followed by the judiciary (82 per cent). Hospitals and the health sector are viewed as highly corrupt
MPs
EC
ACC
Judiciary
Shalish
Police
Military
Local Govt. rep.
0 20 40 60 80 100
Female
Male
Rural
Urban
City
G
e
n
d
e
r
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
0 20 40 60 80 100
corp
0 25 50 75 100
very dissatisfed
somewhat dissatisfed
somewhat satisfed
very satisfed

Gaibandha
Rangpur
Kurigram
Coxs Bazar
Bandarban
Dhaka
Narayanganj
Maulvibazar
Gazipur
Narsingdi
Meherpur
Habiganj
Sylhet
Bhola
Khagrachhari
Manikganj
Munshiganj
Nilphamari
Chittagong
Barisal
Pirojpur
Kushtia
Madaripur
Shariatpur
Barguna
Noakhali
Comilla
Brahmanbari
Tangail
NAT
Patuakhali
Jamalpur
Jhalokati
Naogaon
Sirajganj
Natore
Lalmonirhat
Panchagarh
Pabna
Rajbari
Rajshahi
Dinajpur
Chandpur
Feni
Thakurgaon
Gopalganj
Rangamati
Sunamganj
Faridpur
Mymensingh
Lakshmipur
Nawabganj
Bagerhat
Kishorganj
Magura
Sherpur
Netrakona
Chuadanga
Khulna
Jessore
Bogra
Satkhira
Jhenaidah
Joypurhat
Narail
do not know
Bangladeshs Young Citzens 61
by 40 per cent of the respondents, followed by another 40 per cent of somewhat corrupt. The education
sector, tax and NGOs are seen as the least corrupt entities, with 44 per cent, 32 per cent and 27 per cent overall
disagreement, respectively. Overall, neither urban - rural variations nor gender ones are very pronounced.
In regard to socio-economic disparities, people in higher income groups generally report a higher sensitivity
towards corruption than lower income groups. The difference of perception is highest for three sectors,
namely power, health and tax (see Figure 5.15, below). This does not necessarily mean that poor people are
less exposed to corruption, although for tax they might have a lower degree of exposure. Overall, we interpret
this as different degrees of tolerance towards corruption.
When asking youth about their perceptions of crime, we provided them with an extensive list of crimes and
asked them to rate these according to severity. Overall, there was an astonishingly strong perception about
crime, and it would have been interesting to find out whether this is based on actual experience or overall
perception. The top five crimes are murder, drug and alcohol abuse, dowry and personal property crimes,
all with more than 80 per cent of response as very severe. More than 70 per cent of the respondents also
think that eve teasing, sexual violence, and women and child trafficking are also quite severe in Bangladesh.
More than 60 per cent of the respondents have also reported kidnapping and demands for ransom, police
harassment and extortion as major crimes. Only a few crimes, such as ethnic and religious violence, are not
seen as severe (48 and 61 per cent, even when combining somewhat severe and highly severe). Some
crimes have a strong gender dimension, and thus young women respondents reported a higher degree of
severity for these crimes, such as eve-teasing, dowry, and sexual violence, although the differences are not
highly pronounced (see Figures 5.14 and 5.15).
Figure 5.14 Assessing the most severe crimes Figure 5.15 Assessing corruption
(disaggregated by income groups)
62 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
0 20 40 60 80 100
Personal proprety
Eve teasing
Sex violence
Dowry
Politically infuenced violence
Religlous violence
Ethnic
Domestic
violence
violence
Land grabbing
Drug abuse
Alcohol abuse
Murder
Police harrassment
Women and child
Kidnappingand ransom
Extorition
very severe
somewhat severe
not so severe
not at all severe
do not know

0 20 40 60 80 100
Private org.
NGOs
Hospital & health workers
Power
Courts
Local govt.
Hospital
Education
Tax
highest income group
lowest income group
Again, it is reflected that males are more exposed to political violence compared to females (58 per cent
and 48 per cent very severe, respectively). At the same time, some of the crimes are much more prominent
in urban areas and city corporations, such as land grabbing, murder and drug and alcohol (ab)uses. In city
corporations, a higher percentage of respondents reported more police harassment compared to those living
in urban and rural areas.
When asking how justice should be handled, we have provided a sub-set of formal and informal mechanisms,
and asked the youth whether they agree or disagree. According to their perceptions, the judiciary, government
executives, as well as family are the top three mechansims for handling justice (with 94, 90 and 90 per cent
agreement, respectively). Yet, young people also perceive that shalish (local arbitration committees) and
religious leaders should play an important role in handling justice (each with more than 70 per cent support).
At the same time, there was some strong opposition regarding the involvement of politicians in handling
justice. Thus, the majority either highly or somewhat disagree that they should be involved. The second
strongest opposition was towards handling justice by religious leaders, although at a much lower level. One
aspect of concern is that handling justice on the spot also received quite some support (74 per cent, when
combining high and somewhat agreement). We assume that justice often gets delayed, due to lengthy and
cumbersome procedures, and that this creates some form of support for handling it directly.
As a follow up of the question about handling crimes, we also included the aspect of how to reduce crime,
by providing a sub-set of 12 options. Overall, the role of mobile courts in reducing crime got quite large
support. At the same time, youth perceive that for crime prevention the special security forces (such as the
Rapid Action Battaillon, RAB) have the most important role, followed by the judiciary (97 and 95 per cent,
when combining highly and somewhat important). In addition, the role of the media, family and local elected
representatives seem to be quite important for crime control (each with more than 90 per cent support). On
the other hand, private security companies and, Ansar-VDP (Village Defence Party), are not seen as important
for controlling crime.
Figure 5.16 Who should handle justice ?
Bangladeshs Young Citzens 63
Govt. Executive
On the spot
Judiciary
Religious leaders
Shalish
Political leaders
Family members
highlyagree
somewhat agree
somewhat disagree
highlydisagree
do not know
0 20 40 60 80 100

Courts
RAB
Pol i ce
Medi a
Fami l y
MPs
Pv.securi ty compani es
Educati on authori ti es
Local govt
Ansar VDP
Local pol i ti ci ans
Mobi l e court
hi ghl y i mportant
somewhat i mportant
not so i mportant
no at al l i mportant
do not know

0 20 40 60 80 100
Figure 5.17 How to reduce crime ?
64 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
5.8 Assessing the Current Government
A standard question from our previous public opinion surveys is the one regarding assessments of the
performance of the current and previous governments. Overall, this demonstrates a moderately critical
assessment of both the current and the past elected government. The level of satisfaction with the
performance of the two politically elected governments, both the current Awami League and the past BNP,
is at about 65 per cent and 70 per cent, respectively. Generally, the majority has opted for a low level of
satisfaction (somewhat satisfied ), whereas only a minority of 20 per cent have stated to be highly satisfied.
At the same time, the present government has received quite a strong degree of dissatisfaction, at 35 per
cent, compared to 26 per cent for the last BNP government and only 21 per cent for the last CTG. The latter
has received a remarkably strong satisfaction, and about 78 per cent of all respondents are either somewhat
satisfied or even very satisfied, the highest overall level (see Figure 5.18). As was observed for many other
aspects, gender and locational or district-level disparities are not very pronounced, although men and people
living in the city corporation areas reported a stronger dissatisfaction than women and rural people (see
Figure 5.19).
Figure 5.18 Assessing the current and past governments
Figure 5.19 Assessing the current government (disaggregated)

Past (BNP) Government
Past CTG
Current Government
verysatisfed
somewhat satisfed
dissatisfed
verydissatisfed
do not know
0 20 40 60 80 100
0 20 40 60 80 100
City corp.
Urban
Rural
Male
Female
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
G
e
n
d
e
r
verysatisfed
somewhat satisfed
dissatisfed
verydissatisfed
do not know
C

H

A

P

T

E

R
6
The Digital Generation -
Bangladeshs (Dis-)Connected Youth
Pabna X/2012
66 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
6.1 The Digital Generation - An Introduction
When speaking about the current generation, there is a strong tendency to epitomise them as the digital
generation. While the overall role of communication has already been emphasised in McLuhans seminal
publication on Understanding Media (1962) the more recent technical and technological changes of
information technology (IT) have brought these developments to the doorsteps of countries, and their
citizens, across the world. At the same time, these technological revolutions went hand in hand with massive
internal social divides of those who have the access, and the purchasing capacities, to access and utilise these
technologies. This debate, captured as the digital divide has given rise to more comprehensive studies
about social inclusion and exclusion. The quintessence of these studies is to elaborate on the vast disparities
of access to any form of digital media, particularly in (so-called) developing countries (see for instance Selwyn
2004, van Dijk 2006, Montgomery 2007).
At the same time, these global developments pose quite a challenge for any government. In terms of national
policies, the current Awami League government and their Digital Bangladesh policy places a strong
emphasis on modern Information Technology services. In their Election Manifesto, they point out their past
achievements, and argue that these made it possible for Bangladesh to enter the digital age (ibid. 2009, 2). In
their Vision 2021 they have epitomised this policy as Digital Bangladesh. This has several components, one
is aiming at a country-wide coverage of IT infrastructural facilities, and also the provision of core government
services at the lowest administrative (union parishad) level. In addition, they also aim at providing IT training
at school level and to increase what could be termed digital literacy across the country (see also de Silva
2012 for Sri Lanka).
This section will start off by briefly summarising the current governments Digital Bangladesh Policy, and its
evolution. As argued above, this policy is not directly linked to youth, although many of the policy components
do focus, whether explicitly or merely implicitly, on youth (chapter 6.2.). We will then provide information
from the BYS on how young people have access to and utilise several different types of communication
media, in the form of mobile phones (chapter 6.3.), internet and digital networks (chapter 6.4.). This section
was originally included in the chapter on leisure activities (for more details see chapter 7.6, below) but we
felt that the richness of the data deserves a chapter of its own. As the Digital Bangladesh Policy is also a
flagship of the current Awami League government we also felt the need to create appropriate data for better-
informed debates and policy reforms.
We are aware that the title of this chapter is slightly provocative, indicating both inclusion and exclusion.
While mobile phones have experienced a rather wide and comprehensive coverage during the last years,
personal computers and internet facilities, and utilisation even more so, are still inaccessible to a vast majority.
From these findings, we would question the notion of a Digital Generation, as of now, and also argue for the
strong need to revise the policy.
6.2 The Governments Digital Bangladesh Policy
In Bangladesh, the first ICT Policy dates back to the previous Awami League government in 2002. The policy
had the ambitious vision of delivering services to citizens, stating that the Government shall implement
ICT systems to provide nationwide coverage and access by any citizen to the government databases and
administrative systems which can be used to extend public services to the remotest corner (GOB/MSICT
2002, 3.6.2). The actual ICT Act was passed in 2006. Along with the latter Act an E-government Cell was
established in 2006 under the Prime Ministers Office. This had the main task of coordinating and monitoring
all ICT related activities within government (Taifur 2009, see also IGS 2010, 93ff ).
In June 2008, during the past Caretaker Government, a National Information and Communication Technology
Review Committee (NICTRC) was formed (GOB Gazette 28). Their policies were quite ambitious, aiming
to provide access to the internet/universal world of information to all citizens within five years, as well as
to extend fibre optics up to the upazilla level, so that rural people could have access to the internet and
upgraded services. From development partners, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) provided
technical assistance to this cell through their Access to Information Programme (A2I). So far, the A2I Program
has carried out the strategic planning for the Digital Bangladesh Initiative (IGS 2010, 92), and a strategic plan
was formulated, the Digital Bangladesh Strategy in Action. Yet, both the ICT Policy 2002 and ICT Act 2006
were only poorly implemented. Earlier, IGS has argued that this was due to weak implementation capacity
this policy was never fully realised (IGS 2009, 86).
When drafting their Manifesto in 2008, the Awami League pointed out their crucial role in advancing IT
and communication services. Thus, they point out that by abolishing monopoly in the mobile telephone
sector and making mobile phones available to everyone at low prices and increasing access to information
technology by reducing import duties [..] the Awami League government made it possible for Bangladesh to
enter the digital age (ibid. 2009, 2). For the overall IT sector, their Digital Bangladesh Policy has some core
targets that are quite ambitious. Overall, they state that our vision is to make Bangladesh digital in 2021
(ibid., ca. 9). On the one hand, this is quite an ambitious policy, yet on the other hand, the formulation is also
slightly vague. They do not explicitly state that they aim at reaching their target by 2021, and thus during
their term of government. Rather they state that this target should be reached in 2021, i.e. at a time when
they might not be in power.
Leaving aside this rhetoric and linguistic considerations, they have quite ambitious plans for reaching their
target, attributing a strong role to young people. Thus, they argue that software industry and IT services will
be developed by providing all possible assistance to talented young people and interested entrepreneurs
(ibid.). With regard to education, they state that IT education will be made compulsory at secondary level by
2013 and at primary level by 2021 (ibid.). When assessing the past (BNP) governments policy, they use quite
straight forward language, arguing that the task force on ICT that was established during the Awami League
rule but rendered ineffective by the BNP-Jamat Alliance will be reactivated (ibid.).
The current government approved the new ICT Policy in 2009. The e-government agenda, while not specifically
mentioned in the policy, is embedded in the vision of using ICT tools to bring about a transparent, responsive,
and accountable government (GOB/MSICT 2009, 3; see also IGS 2010, 86). In terms of infrastructure, this
includes quite ambitious plans. High-tech parks, software technology parks, ICT incubators and computer
villages will be set up at suitable locations in the country. For public use, the tele-density of internet connection
will be increased by 70 per cent within five years, i.e. by the year 2014. By 2015 the broadband connections
should be increased by 30 per cent and by 2018 by 40 per cent. In order to make facilities available at the
district-level, initiatives should be taken to provide internet connections at the same rates as in Dhaka city.
In addition, WiMax and other wireless technologies were to be made available all over the country within
five years. Overall, the Ministry of Post and Telecommunication (MOPT), the Bangladesh Telecommunication
Regulatory Commission (BTRC), and private telecom companies are to be responsible for providing the above
mentioned services. At the same time, a unified policy was to be formulated to give access to all citizens.
The Digital Generaton - Bangladeshs (Dis-)Connected Youth 67
68 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
With regard to service delivery from the government, IT facilities were to be set up at many local (union and
upazilla) level offices. In addition, for education facilities each school and college should have a computer
laboratory with at least 20 computers and each institution should have at least one high speed (one mega
byte per second (MBPS)) internet connection. They also advised that educational institutions need to increase
the number of teachers of science and English. Logistically, the Ministry of Science and Information and
Communication Technology (MOSICT) is made responsible for the provisions. In addition, the Ministry of
Education was encouraged to arrange for libraries at each school with technical books. In terms of practical
experience, all ICT graduates should have a one-year on the job training, where the government was to
provide 80 per cent of the salaries to the software companies.
For the national labour market, the Digital Bangladesh Policy envisages that the Government encourages
developing a local ICT sector and skilled ICT professionals (GOB/ MOSICT 2009). The policy also states that
the training costs of the ICT professionals would be reduced (by 50 per cent) and that women would be
given preferences. They also provide financial assistance to young entrepreneurs who intend to build up
ICT ventures. For doing so, a special entrepreneurship fund would be formed, and the Bangladesh Bank,
the Bangladesh Computer Council and private financial institutions are the designated authorities. Based
on the global demand, the ICT training should be updated so that local ICT professionals are able to seek
employment abroad. For higher studies abroad, there would be educational loans of up to four years.
In terms of overall infrastructure, the Digital Bangladesh Policy states that fibre optics would be extended to
the upazilla levels, so that the rural people could have access to internet and upgraded services. For social
inclusion, Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation (BRTC) was also asked to bring the costs down, although
this measure has had, so far, a rather limited success (see below). Overall, this policy still has considerable
inconsistencies. The institutional arrangements are quite complex and the responsibilities are vested with
various bodies. The Ministry of Primary and Mass Education, for instance, is made responsible for increasing
the power supply, while the MOSICT is being made responsible for increasing the numbers of (IT) teachers.
While, overall, the policy states highly ambitious plans for developing the local ICT sector and professionals, it
remains silent about overall budgets and funding.
6.3 Connected Youth The Vast Spread of Mobile Phones
Mobile phone facilities can be seen as a first step to participating in the digital era. In our last years Governance
Barometer Survey we included information about the vast spread of mobile phones across the country, but
we also pointed out some persisting regional disparities. Thus, in February 2010, about 70 per cent of the
population had access to mobile phones. This figure was slightly lower than the coverage suggested by the
British Councils The Next Generation report, which states that 73 per cent of youth own a mobile (ibid.
2009, 26 and Masud 2009, 28). By December 2011, mobile phones had further spread substantially and were
available to 84.5 per cent of all youth. Yet, whereas overall access has seen some quite promising development,
there are still pronounced social disparities. Above all, access to these phones should not be mistaken for a
high level of utilisation, as we will discuss below.
Overall, gender disparities are minimal and disparities across age groups are not of high importance. This
piece of information is quite different from the findings of The Next Generation, where gender disparities
were quite substantial (81 per cent among men but only 64 per cent among the women; British Council Dhaka
2009, 26). In terms of age patterns, the likelihood of having mobile phones increases slightly along age groups,
at least for younger ages of 15 to 18. After that, the pattern is inconsistent (see Figure 6.1). When analysing
the availability of mobile phones based on income groups, there is also a promising trend, as coverage has
increased quite substantially, particularly among the lower income groups. Nevertheless, the social gap of not
having mobile phones is still pronounced, while only 8 per cent among the highest income quintiles did not
have mobile phones, this was more than 22 per cent among the lowest income quintile (i.e. a disparity index
of 2.7). At the same time, for youth from lower income households, mobile phones are a much more recent
phenomenon. While nearly half of all upper income youth have had mobile phones for more than five years,
this share is only 25 per cent for the lowest income quintile. At the same time, more than 40 per cent among
the latter have had access to mobile phones only for the past one or two years (see Figure 6.2).
Figure 6.1 Availability of mobile phones Figure 6.2 Histories of mobile phones (total number of cases
(by age groups) by income groups)
In terms of regional disparities, the last few years have seen a substantial spread of mobile phones across the
country (see Figure 6.3). By December 2011, young people in most districts had mobile phones, at an average
proportion of about 80 to 85 per cent. Yet, there were a few districts, particularly in the north-western region
and in the south-eastern hill districts, where mobile phone densities were much lower. This was the case in the
districts of the Chittagong Hill Tracts (at 53 to 60 per cent), but also in the Comilla, Feni and Noakhali area (at
63 to 69 per cent). These data clearly indicate that significant regional disparities are still persistent.
From a policy and governance angle this gives cause for concern as some of these districts are also critical in
regard to poverty alleviation. If service delivery from the government is to be made available through mobile
phones, then a substantial number of households would not be reached. In addition, there is a further critical
aspect. As argued above, data about having or not having mobile phones should not be mistaken for actual
utilisation. Often, such a type of communication data in regard to mobile phones (or internet) is enumerated
in form of binary coding, where there is a yes or no answer. Yet, this leaves a blind spot on actual utilisation
patterns. Whereas possessing a mobile phone is a crucial prerequisite it by no means implies a guarantee for
actual utilisation. Indeed, purchasing capacities, particularly among young people, are usually rather limited.
During our first round of FGDs we had several discussions about this issue. Many among the young people
stated that they mainly use their mobile phones for giving each other missed calls, a phenomenon that is
common worldwide (see for instance Collin and Burns 2009, 283ff ).
The Digital Generaton - Bangladeshs (Dis-)Connected Youth 69

0 250 500 750 1000 1250 1500 1750
Up to 5000
5001 - 7500 TK
7501 - 10000 TK
10001 - 15000 TK
15001 TK and above
none
one year
two
three/four
fve and more
0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
a
g
e

g
r
o
u
p
s
mob.phone
no mob.phone
70 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
Figure 6.3 History of mobile phones (district-level)
As this is quite an interesting piece of information we felt the need to obtain more information about actual
costs for several means of communication, including mobile phones. Overall, monthly expenditures for mobile
phone charges are at less than 150 Taka (i.e. about 1.50 Euro or 1.8 USD) for the majority of youth. About one
fifth of all young people spend only 50 Taka or less per month for recharging their mobile phones and about
one third spend ca. 150 to 400 Taka. Less than 10 per cent spend more than 600 Taka, although some of
them spend up to 3,000 Taka. Our assumption that actual utilisation costs would have a strong gender or age
pattern could not be verified. Disparities existed only for the lowest expenditure group, who accounted for 18
cartography: Graner 2012
data source: IGS Bangladesh Youth Survey 2011
Dhaka
Chandpur
Tangail
Bogra
B A N G L A D E S H
History of having mobile phones
(BYS 2011)
no mobile phones
1 year or less
1 to 2 years
more than 2 years
(n= 6,575)
0 50 100
km
400
Sylhet
Moulvi Bazar
Kishoreganj
Brahmanbaria
Hobiganj
Netrakona
Narsingd
Gazipur
Mymensingh
Manikganj
Sunamganj
Narayanganj
Sirajganj
Natore
Munshiganj
Comilla
Shariatpur
Rangamati
Chandpur
Barisal
Feni
Noakhali
Gopaljanj
Perojpur
Bhola
Patuakhali
Barguna
Bagerhat
Jhalakati
Lakshmipur
Khulna
Narail
Jessore
Jhenaidah
Satkhira
Magura
Faridpur
Rajbari
Chuadanga
Meherpur
Pabna
Madaripur
Rajshahi
Naogaon
Nawabganj
Jaipurhat
Gaibandha
Jamalpur
Rangpur Dinajpur
Thakurgaon Lalmonirhat
Nilphamari
Panchagarh
Kurigram
Sherpur
Chittagong
Coxs Bazar
Bandarban
Khagrachari
Kushtia
The Digital Generaton - Bangladeshs (Dis-)Connected Youth 71
- 30 per cent among the younger youth (15 to 20) but only 10 - 15 per cent for older youth (25 to 30). Similarly,
expenditures of more than 400 Taka were done by only a small section among the younger group (10 to
22 per cent) but by 25 to 30 per cent among the older ones (see Figure 6.4). Presumably these expenditure
patterns are governed by overall increasing incomes. Astonishingly, actual monthly expenditure for mobile
phones among the different income groups are also not as pronounced as expected. While more than 50 per
cent of the lowest income group have low expenditures (of less than 150 Taka), all other income groups also
have a substantial number of youth with similarly low expenditures (see Figure 6.5).
Figure 6.4 Monthly costs for mobile phones (by age) Figure 6.5 Monthly costs for mobile phones
(by income groups)
6.4 Disconnected Youth The Un-Digital Generation of Bangladesh
While mobile phones have provided the technical means to connect youth quite considerably, it is a similarly
interesting exercise to obtain more information about the availability and utilisation patterns of personal
computers, internet and digital networks. Within the section about leisure activities (for details see chapter
7.4, below) we have included a set of questions about the importance of computers, internet and social
networks. The answers given had a clear indication that these were of importance to a small minority only.
This is even more obvious when asking the respondents about the actual time, and money, spent on these
activities. In addition, there was a considerable gap between what youth stated as being important and their
actual utilisation patterns.
Among the youth, only 10 per cent have categorised themselves as internet users. This figure is unexpectedly
low, as the British Councils The Next Generation documents 15 per cent for 2008 already. This decline is
difficult to explain but we doubt that there is an overall negative trend. Most likely this figure is due to a
stronger cross-country representation of our sample, where we have purposively aimed at representing
youth from all parts of the country and across all social groups. In terms of disparities, the age pattern is again
much less pronounced than expected. The highest proportion of internet users exists among those aged 17 to
21 (12 to 16 per cent), whereas it is only about 8 to 10 per cent among those either younger or older. Yet, there
is a sharp decline among those who are 26 and older, where the internet is merely accessed by 3 to 6 per cent
(see Figure 6.6, below). Similarly high disparities exist for income groups, whereas less than 5 per cent among
the lowest income group utilise the internet, this is more than 22 per cent among the highest (see Figure 6.7).
With a disparity index of 4.9, this was one of the highest disparities found in the entire survey.

0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
a
g
e

g
r
o
u
p
s
< 50 Tk/month
50-150
150-400
> 400 Tk/month

0 500 1000 1500
Up to 5000
5001 - 7500 TK
7501 - 10000 TK
10001 - 15000 TK
15001 TK and above
upto 50 Tk
51 - 150 Tk
151-400
400+
72 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
When asked for their leisure priorities, only 130 persons (among 6,575, i.e. less than 2 per cent) attributed
any importance to either personal computers, internet or digital networks. Among these activities, personal
computers were by far most important. For internet and digital networks there were 20 and 3 persons in the
entire sample (i.e. a single digit per mille proportion). Even as a second priority none of these activities are
of great importance, and the cumulative share was less than 7 per cent (with all together 45 cases). Again,
personal computers are much more important than either internet or digital networks. Only as a third priority
these forms of activities are of any importance to, overall, less than 30 per cent of the youth. Again, personal
computers are by far the most important aspect, for about three quarters of the total numbers.
Among these activities, gender disparities are highly pronounced only for internet and digital networks.
For personal computers the importance for men and women is nearly equal, in all three priority groups.
Yet for internet, and even more so for digital networks, the proportions among men are nearly double that
for women. Yet, as stated above, this disparity index of 2 is much lower than the social disparity index of
nearly 5 (see above). While these latter data give some reason for optimism, actual utilisation patterns are
again distinctly different from attributing importance. The most astonishing part of our analysis was when
disaggregating those who ranked IT utilisation as a third priority. When analysing actual utilisation patterns,
it was obvious that more than half did not actually use IT facilities.
Figure 6.6 Internet (non-) users (by age groups) Figure 6.7 Internet (non-) users (by income quintiles)
6.5 Assessing IT Literacy - A Modest Picture
As demonstrated above, the Digital Generation, even among the countrys youth, is quite a way into the
future. A third aspect of this issue, in addition to access and utilisation patterns, is to gain some understanding
of how young people assess their own IT skills. In the BYS we have included a few questions in regard to
computer (writing and calculation) and internet skills. As a comparative variable we have also asked youth to
assess their English language skills. Interestingly, there are vast disparities within these, and this was quite a
surprise for us.
Overall, the self-assessment in regard to English language skills is quite promising. The largest single group
stated that they are somewhat skilled. Only 20-30 per cent of the youth assessed themselves as totally
unskilled. Even in rural areas, more than 40 per cent felt that their English language skills fall into the category

0% 20% 40% 60% 80% 100%
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
users
non users
0 200 400 600 800 1000
Up to 5000
5001 - 7500 TK
7501 - 10000 TK
10001 - 15000 TK
15001 TK and above
The Digital Generaton - Bangladeshs (Dis-)Connected Youth 73
of somewhat skilled. Gender disparities are moderate, among both men and women only about 30 per cent
opted for the lowest skill group (totally unskilled).
On the other hand, assessments for computer skills are substantially lower, at about 15 per cent, even when
combining the two levels of somewhat skilled and highly skilled. Among those who do assess their skills
positively, there is a rather modest level of doing so, only 2.5 per cent assess their skills at the higher level,
compared to nearly 13 per cent at the lower level. What was quite a surprise for us was that the large majority
(66 per cent) assess their skills as totally unskilled. Overall, disparities are substantial, and gender disparities
are more than 3-fold. While 23 per cent among men assess their skills positively, it is only less than 8 per cent
for women. At the same time, even among men a large majority (nearly 60 per cent) assess their skills as non
existent (totally unskilled), a proportion that is even higher among women (73 per cent).
Compared to gender disparities, locational disparities are overall slightly lower but at the same time more
pronounced in regard to skill levels. Those who are somewhat skilled account for 11, 18 and 22 per cent, in
rural and urban areas and city corporations. Yet, disparities for the highly skilled level are nearly 5-fold (at less
than 2 per cent versus nearly 10 per cent; for more detailed data see Table A5, annex). Quite astonishingly,
socio-economic disparities are not as vast as we would have thought. Even among youth from the highest
income quintile, nearly 50 per cent have assessed themselves as highly unskilled, compared to 75 per cent
from the lowest income group. On the other hand, the two skill levels have a disparity value of 3 for somewhat
skilled (8 versus 24 per cent) and even 10 for those who assess themselves as highly skilled (0.6 compared to
6 per cent).
While these self-assessments of computer skills are already extremely low, the pattern is even lower in regard
to internet skills. At the lowest assessment level, differences are moderate, at an average of 71 per cent, in
addition to more than 13 per cent who opted for do not know. On the other hand, those who assessed their
skills positively were merely 10 per cent. Gender disparities are again highly pronounced, at 3.4 per cent for
women but 17per cent for men, for the two skill levels combined (i.e. a gender disparity value of 5). Social
and locational disparities are partly even higher. When combining the two skill levels, the lowest and highest
income quintiles are 3.7 per cent versus 23.5 per cent, and disparties are thus more than 6-fold. Locational
disparities are at 8 versus 25 per cent for the two skill levels, for rural areas and city corporations, respectively
(see Figure 6.8, above). At the same time 1.6 per cent compared to 10 per cent when only considering the
highly skilled groups (i.e. again more than 6-fold).

Figure 6.8 Self-assessment of computer skills Figure 6.9 Self-assessment of English language
(based on gender and locality) skills (based on gender and locality)

0 20 40 60 80 100
City corp.
Urban
Rural
Male
Female
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
G
e
n
d
e
r
0 20 40 60 80 100
highly skilled
somewhat skilled
limited skilled
totally unskilled
do not know
74 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
These self-assessments indicate a rather gloomy picture about how even the young generation assesses their
skills in a field that is usually addressed as quintessential for the new generation. They could be interpreted
as a form of modesty, yet we would argue that the self-assessments about their English language skills, at
realistically quite a low level in rural areas, do not allow for such an interpretation.
6.6 Digital Bangladesh - Political Ambitions versus Actual Achievements
While there have been massive investments into the IT sector over the past decade, and even more so during
the past three years, the actual paradigmatic changes that should have been brought about, are yet to be
achieved. So far, a strong focus has been placed on providing the technical infrastructure for future utilisation
across the country. Yet, the actual access and utilisation patterns do, as of now, not reflect this. While mobile
phones have become a common feature across the country, or at least in a large number of districts, the
utilisation patterns of other digital forms of media lag dramatically behind. When assessing both skill levels
and utilisation patterns it becomes rather obvious that the countrys young generation, until today, needs to
be characterised as IT illiterate and, by and large, disconnected from modern digital technology.
These findings are certainly quite critical for those in charge of promoting and advancing digital services and
skills. At the same time, these findings also ask for some rather immediate and comprehensive policy revisions
in order to counterbalance these shortcomings. In addition to infrastructure, skill development needs to be
seen as a quintessential component. What is crucial for immediate action is the need for the government to
clearly regulate its own involvement, and clearly specify a division of a labour, and investment, with other core
stakeholders, from both the private sector and NGOs.
For significant improvements, schools as well as community centres for youth could be quite instrumental.
In addition to basic infrastructure and facilities, there is also a need to ensure that there are instructors with a
moderately high level of teaching skills, particularly for clients who have, realistically, quite a low level of overall
skills. For unemployed young people, both men and women, this could be an interesting option for at least
part-time employment. For NGOs and CBOs this could also be a future field of operation, and development
partners could consider supporting this field on a larger scale. Yet, overall, the massive investments needed
also have to be supported by the private sector, in the form of public-private partnerships. One form of doing
so could possibly be by providing second-hand equipment which could be installed at least at union parishad
level offices. By doing so, young people could substantially improve their skills, and confidence, about modern
technologies. At the same time, youth with improved IT communication skills will also be a great asset to the
local communities.
C

H

A

P

T

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R
7
Youth as Family and Community
Members
Gazipur ii/2010
76 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
7.1 Family and Community - An Introduction
One standard set of questions in many youth surveys is the one regarding their ideas about family and
community (see deSouza et al. 2009, Population Council 2009, Hettige and Mayer 2002). We have taken up
some of these questions, for instance, asking the young people about the overall importance of family and
community, and about the role of particular family members. In addition, we have included aspects such
as the roles that youth attribute to their parents and siblings. For the crucial information about life cycle
planning, we have asked the respondents about ideal ages of core aspects of adult life, such as completing
education, getting married and having children and a few other questions (see chapter 7.3). As mentioned
above, one aspect of great interest to us was the importance attributed to various leisure activities (chapter
7.6), as well as the acceptance, or unacceptance of social change (see chapter 7.8).
7.2 The Importance of Family and Community
Studies on youth in South Asia and elsewhere confirm that family and its members play a crucial role in shaping
the lives of young people. They assist young people to develop their identity and personality, and provide
them with skills that are essential for their lives. Other studies on youth in South Asia and the Arab world
have shown that youth have considered their families the most important part of their lives (see Hettige and
Mayer 2002, deSouza 2009 and Hettige et al. 2012). The BYS has covered this topic in several ways. One was
to ask about the overall importance of family and more specifically about the importance of particular family
members, from both the parental and their own generation. In addition, the section on leisure activities also
includes a section on spending time with family. For further elaboration on their relations with the family, the
BYS included a subset of questions about specific roles of parents, the level of freedom and restrictions, and
selection criteria for spouses.
Among all family members, the importance given to mother exceeds all other family members, and this
pattern is similar irrespective of localities, income groups, age or gender. Overall, mothers were mentioned as
the most important person within the family by 95 per cent of all youth. Compared to this, all other relatives
had much lower values (see Figure 7.1). This predominant role was also confirmed during the focus group
discussions. There, young people argued that fathers often maintain a distance when the children grow up.
They often seek their assistance from their fathers to make important decisions, but they can rarely share
feelings or open up to them.
Figure 7.1 Important relations within the family
Mother
Father
Elder brother/sister
Younger brother/sister
Father's family
Mother's family
0 20 40 60 80 100
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
not applicable
Elder siblings play an important role, as well. They assist them in studies and listen to their problems, help
them to make decisions regarding studies and similar issues. On the other hand, it is good to have the younger
siblings but it adds additional responsibilities to elder ones. The extended family is important, in that their
opinions matter to the families. Sometimes if there is a successful relative then it helps to get a job. In order
to measure the impact and implications of parental influence on young people, we inquired about several
issues to get some feed back about their experiences and relationship with their parents. It was quite evident
that they have rather clear ideas about what the role of the parents should be. Overall, there is a strong
consensus that parents should be a good guardian, to provide guidance, and to encourage discipline. Thus,
irrespective of gender, locality, age and income groups about 99 per cent agreed on this.
In the South Asian context, it is widely accepted that one of the core roles of parents is to select a spouse for
their children. About 95 per cent of Bangladeshi youth are of the opinion that it is important for their parents
to play a role in the selection of their spouses. Among these, a large majority of 80 per cent mentioned that it
was even highly important for them. Interestingly, there were hardly any differences in opinion among the
youth from different localities, income group, age groups and even gender. At the same time, only 1 per cent
regard the role of parents in spousal selection as highly unimportant.
In addition, other roles of the parents are slightly less important, less than 70 per cent think that the parents
should provide them with financial aid, and only slightly more think so about education (about 75 per cent).
These two aspects have a higher disparity level than the others. Youth from the 25-30 age group consider it
to besomewhat unimportant, a pattern that is also quite strong among youth from lower income groups
. Our interpretation is that young people from lower income groups need to work from a very early age
and therefore develop an attitude that parents are not solely responsible for providing financial means (and
education). In the case of education, 8 per cent of youth from the 25-30 age group and a similar proportion
from the lower income groups think that the parents are somewhat unimportant in providing education.
98 per cent (of which 83 per cent think it is highly important) consider that parents should have a role in
disciplining their child.
Overall, these statements were also supported by statements from FGD participants. They mentioned that it
was the parents who are largely responsible for disciplining the children, at times even physically. Similarly,
the participants agreed that they firmly believe in the advice given by their parents and make the most
important decisions based on their judgments.
Figure 7.2 Important roles of parents
Besides family, the social groups and the persons living in the neighbourhood have an immense impact on
Selecting Spouse
Providing fnancial support
Provide education
Encourage discilpine
Provide guidance
Be a good guardian
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
can not say
0 20 40 60 80 100
Youth as Family and Community Members 77
78 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
youth. In Bangladesh, many of these communities are characterised by a single religious group, although in
some areas there are villages with mixed religious groups. In the survey, the section on community started
off with an overall assessment about the importance of community, followed by a more specific sub-set of
questions that addressed particular aspects of communities. This was followed by a sub-set of questions
about religion, addressing different aspects, for both Muslim and non-Muslim communities.
Overall, there was a strong agreement that communities are highly important, and this was shared by
nearly 95 per cent. When specifying certain aspects, there was still a high level of agreement for most aspects
mentioned, such as safeguarding the interests of the individuals, supporting all members in times of need,
solving conflicts, encouraging religious behaviour, where about 95 per cent agreed, and most of them (70-75
per cent) in the category highly agree (see Figure 7.3). Some of the other options, such as supporting the
activities of the state, providing a sense of security or safety, or preserving traditions and values still scored
around 65 per cent in the highest category. While these statements are encouraging, we also feel the need to
point out the bias these answers might have. As stated earlier, the survey responses generally had a strong
tendency towards agreement, so perhaps these high values should not be over-interpreted.
At the same time, similar views were also expressed during the FGDs. There, respondents mentioned that the
community played an important role in preserving the interests of individuals, resolving conflicts, providing a
support base, sense of belonging and preserve the social, cultural and religious traditions and norms. This also
implies that many important decisions of the family (and individuals) need to keep communal perspectives in
mind. One of the examples given was the need to marry off daughters not too late, particularly among the
middle class, lower middle and poor families. Another example was adult sons who remained unemployed for
some time, which was an issue mentioned in small towns and rural areas.
Figure 7.3 Reasons why communities are important
As stated above, the answers provided by the youth were generally of quite low variance, which is always
a difficulty when interpreting them. One of the exceptions was when asking about who young people
approach in time of need. An overwhelming majority stated that it is the family that is highly important
(97 per cent) or somewhat important, and this was done irrespective of location, gender, age and income
group. In comparison to the value, all other potential supporters, such as teachers, friends, religious leaders,
community leaders, other members of youth groups, or political leaders received a much lower degree of
confidence. Some of these, such as political leaders, other members of youth groups, or community leaders,
religious leaders were even categorised as somewhat unimportant (see Figure 7.4). Friends and religious
Safeguard interests
Support in time of need
Solve conficts
Encourage religious behavior
Support activities of the state
Provide sense of security
Preserve tradition and values
0 20 40 60 80 100
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
can not say
Youth as Family and Community Members 79
leaders have similar positions of being more or less important. These findings have taken us quite by surprise
as it is generally assumed that young people share their problems with their friends first.
Figure 7.4 In time of need whose advice is sought
On the other hand, these findings have also been confirmed during FGDs. Many young people mentioned
that in times of distress and trouble, they generally approach family members. Within the family, it usually
depends on the types of problems regarding who the young people decide to approach. Some of them said
that the parents might rebuke and even beat them, but in the end they would do anything to keep them safe
and secure. Many among the young women stated that they generally seek assistance from their mothers or
elder siblings. Depending on the gravity of the problem, the mother/siblings then discuss these matters with
the father. Male members usually either seek help from elder brothers or friends. If the problem was related
to family and a conflict arose, then they consulted local leaders, particularly political leaders. Otherwise they
tended to stay away from influential leaders. These findings differ significantly from the last Indian Youth
Survey, where the youth expressed that they would ask their friends for help, and only later family members
or members from their community and caste (deSouza 2010). At the same time the findings from the Sri
Lankan Youth Survey 2009 suggest a pattern similar to the one in Bangladesh, where parents are approached
first, followed by friends, relatives and spouses (see Hettige 2009 and Hettige et al. 2012).
7.3 The Importance of Religion
Among the total number of respondents, the large majority are Muslims (88.5 per cent), and the others were
Hindu (9.3 per cent), Buddhists (2.1 per cent), Christians (0.14 per cent), and other religious minorities. When
asking these groups for their understanding of the core aspects of religion, for Muslims this included four of
the five pillars of Islam (praying, reading the Holy Quran, fasting during ramadan, performing the hajj, and
zakat). As expected, all these practices are regarded highly, and they are all categorised as highly important
(see Figure 7.5). Compared to this, wearing the hijab for women was slightly less important (but still 87 per
cent). Two aspects that are comparatively less important are showing tolerance to other religions, where only
73 per cent agree that this is highly important, and tolerance to womens rights, where the number is slightly
higher (79 per cent). Interestingly, the attendance of public jamat (65 per cent) has the lowest level and was
rated much lower than we would have expected.
Family
Other relatives
Teachers
Religious leaders
Friends
Community leaders
Political leaders
Members of youth groups
0 20 40 60 80 100
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
can not say
80 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
Figure 7.5 Importance of religion (among Muslims)
Overall, there are no significant differences among the respondents in terms of localities, age group, income
group and gender. Religion as a topic was also discussed with several key informant interviews. There, we
found that the participants are not very religious but have deep faith in religious beliefs and practices. They
have the opinion that more young people now say their prayers regularly than the previous generations. Even
those who do not pray, fast during ramadan. They believe that wearing the hijab depends on the mentality
of the women, location and family. Many voice the opinion that it is good practice but should not be forced,
rather encouraged. The youth in general showed secularist attitudes and expressed that people of other
religions should be allowed to practice independently.
In the case of respondents from other religious communities, religion is equally important. A pronounced
majority considers praying (96 per cent), reading religious texts (89 per cent), attending weekly congregations
(86 per cent), and participating in annual festivals (84 per cent) as highly important. This is followed by
tolerance towards other religions (80 per cent) and tolerance towards womens rights (83 per cent). Overall,
the BYS clearly indicates that youth from Muslim as well as other religious communities are highly devoted to
their respective religions, and firmly participate in religious practices. There are hardly any differences among
the opinions of the respondents. One pronounced difference has been that among Muslims, many have one
or two friends from other religions, whereas youth from other religions tend to have a much larger number
of friends from other religious communities. At the same time, this could also be due to their low numbers.
Figure 7.6 Importance of religious practices (among non-Muslim communities)
Praying
Reading quaran
Fasting
Haj
Zakat
Wearing hijab
Tolerance to other religions
Tolerance to women rights
Public jamat
0 20 40 60 80 100
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
Praying
Reading religious texts
Weekly congregations
Annual festivals
Other rituals
Tolerance to other religions
Tolerance to women rights
0 20 40 60 80 100
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
7.4 Life-Cycle Planning
As discussed in the introduction, youth is by and large characterised by several major transitions between
childhood and adulthood. Investigating into ideas of life cycle planning is thus a common component of
youth surveys and youth studies, more generally (see also Furlong 2009, unicef 2011, Hettige and Mayer
2002, deSouza et al. 2009). Core features of life cycle include the major events of ones personal life, such as
getting married and having children. Other crucial stages of setting up ones life are completing education
and starting work. As religion is a core feature of Bangladeshi society, we have also included one aspect
from this field, namely undertaking a pilgrimage, hajj for Muslims or other pilgrimages for youth from other
religious groups. In order to capture social change, we have asked for two different types of information for
all these stages, namely ideal ages and actual ages, for those stages that have already been completed. When
analysing the data, we have come across (vast) disparities between ideal and actual ages. In addition, gender
and social disparities within actual ages are quite pronounced. As marriage is a major life cycle event, we have
also asked about selection criteria (see below).
With regard to education, there was an overwhelmingly large consensus that the ideal age for completing
education is 25. At nearly half of all respondents this was one of the widest consensus of the entire survey,
other than with regard to religious matters. Quite astonishingly, this age was mentioned irrespective of gender,
locality, age groups and income groups. At the same time, this variable was also the one where disparities
between what youth thought to be ideal ages and actual ages are most pronounced. As has been mentioned
before, drop-outs among the youth included in our sample start as early as at the age of 8, in addition to those
5 per cent who have never even been to school. When visualising these two sub-sets of data, the overlap for
education has been minimal (see Figure 7.7, below).
A further critical stage of the transition between youth and adulthood is the gradual and final inclusion into
the national, or in some cases even the international, labour force. This is again an aspect where ideal ages and
actual ages are extremely disparate, at least among those who have already taken up some form of temporary
or even permanent work or employment. When asked for ideal ages, there was again a moderately wide
consensus that the age is either18, 20 or 25 years (with 9, 11 and even 21 per cent). However, in practice the
average age of starting work was 16 years, and this includes quite a number who have started working (much)
earlier, even as young as 8-9 years (see Figure 7.8). In addition, women generally start working earlier than
men. Women, on average, begin to work at the age of 14 whereas men start at 17.
Closely related to the completion of education, and in some cases chronologically intertwined, is the stage of
getting married. In Bangladesh it is a common phenomenon that women are married off early, although this
is gradually changing. Yet, even among our 15-30 aged sample, some of the girls had been married off before
reaching the age of 16. This is quite frequent in rural areas and among lower income groups, although these
cases are also documented for urban areas. Again, responses about ideal ages vary quite substantially. On
average, the age of 24 was considered to be the ideal age, with a slight difference between men and women,
at 26 and 22, respectively. At the same time, this implies an average age difference of 2 to 4 years. These ideal
ages have also been confirmed during our FGDs, while their actual experiences have been quite different.
Youth as Family and Community Members 81
82 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
Figure 7.7 Ideal and actual ages for completing Figure 7.8 ideal and actual ages for starting work
education
Figure 7.9 Ideal and actual ages for getting married Figure 7.10 Ideal and actual ages for having children
In terms of fertility, it was difficult to compare ideal and actual ages, as only a small group among them
already had children (n = 2285, i.e. 30 per cent). On average, the respondents think that 27 is the ideal age for
having the first child. While disparities in localities are minimal (26.0 to 26.8), ideal ages for men and women
are more than four years apart, at 28 versus 24, respectively. Interestingly, actual ages (22 versus 18) are also
similarly apart, and thus both groups tend to think that setting up a family four years later would be ideal.
Disparities in regard to ideal ages among age groups are negligible, although disparities based on income
groups are there, with a gap of about two years, as the lowest and the highest income quintile aim at having
children at a later age.
As elaborated above (see chapter 2.4), the actual life experiences of the youth are considerably different. While
women stated that an ideal age is 24, the majority of them had their first child by the age of 18, and in some
0
500
1000
1500
2000
2500
3000
8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30
complete education
complete educ. (actual)
n
o
.

o
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r
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s
p
o
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d
e
n
t
s
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
1400
1600
8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30
working (ideal)
working (actual)
n
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r
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s
p
o
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d
e
n
t
s
0
200
400
600
800
1000
1200
8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30
marriage (ideal)
marriage (actual)
n
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o
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s
p
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d
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n
t
s

0
100
200
300
400
500
600
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800
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1000
8 10 12 14 1 6 18 20 22 24 26 28 30
frst child (actual)
frst child (ideal)
n
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e
s
p
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s
Youth as Family and Community Members 83
cases as early as 14 to 16 years. Among men, this was less of an issue, although in some cases they were as
young as 15. Actual ages also have a distinct social and locational pattern. Youth from higher income groups
(above 15,000 TK) and youths from city corporations consider the ideal age at about 27 and 26 respectively,
but for many among them actual ages are also 20 to 22. Overall, youth in Bangladesh become parents at quite
an early age. During FGDs we met many women who were 16-17 and already have more than one child. Some
mentioned that they got married right after their first menstruation. Among all, the consensus that it would
have been better to get married later, was unquestioned. At the same time, they did not see any opportunity
not to follow their parents demands.
In addition to these life cycle aspects of personal life, we have also included three further aspects, two of
them for future events. One was about the ideal age to retire from work. In general, the respondents answered
that the ideal age is 57 which is the age determined by government for retirement. The second one addressed
a religious part of life that is quite prominent in several religions, namely to make a pilgrimage. For the latter
question, the ideal age was said to be 48. There are hardly any differences among the responses in terms of
age, income, locality and gender.
Last, but not least, we asked our respondents about their plans to get involved in community or social
work. The Next Generation Study had also included this, and it showed a rather strange pattern. Whereas
most young people thought that it is important to do so, hardly any of them were actively involved (British
Council Dhaka 2009, Majumder 2009, 20ff ). From our survey, the responses were quite different. Although
respondents mentioned that they think the ideal age to get involved is approximately 18, many of them got
involved at a much younger age, and some even at 15. Even among the youngest age group (15-19) many
had already been involved in social work, and some of them as early as the age of 14 years. Generally, women
start a little later than men (at 17 versus 15 years).
This clearly shows that youth in general have a strong interest in getting involved in social/communal work.
Similarly, participants in the FGDs mentioned that they all wanted to get involved in some kind of social work.
Many mentioned that parents did not allow them to do so, fearing for their security. Women in particular were
less encouraged, unless it was under the banner of established agencies such as scouts or Holud Pakhi. Fields
of engagement included flood relief distribution, winter clothes collection, or child vaccination. The members
of youth groups of various NGOs (such as TIB) mentioned that they arranged street drama in various places
of their area, aiming at creating awareness among the people against corruption and informing them about
government services.
7.5 Selecting a Spouse
When discussing the role of the parents, a most crucial role was selecting a future spouse (see chapter 7.2,
above). Nevertheless, we also wanted to ask our respondents about their personal selection criteria. This list
included personal aspects, such as a pleasant character as well as her/his family background and education
and work. One aspect hotly debated was whether or not to include a question about having children. Among
all options, having a pleasant character received an overwhelming agreement, and seems to be the most
important aspect when choosing a partner.
84 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
At the same time, having a spouse from a good family (98 per cent) has been assessed as quite important,
as well, and possibly one from a higher social status (87 per cent), and holding a good job (80 per cent). In
addition, a good relationship - although a rather vague expression is of importance. Compared to all these,
the importance of the interest in having children was much less pronounced than we would have thought.
Even more clearly, a persons looks are quite unimportant (at 46 per cent). Interestingly, disparities regarding
these opinions among youth from different social and age groups, localities and gender are quite low. Overall,
we would argue that young people place much stress on a persons character and family background, as well
as on a persons ability to maintain a good relationship. The focus group discussions have complemented and
confirmed these findings.
At the same time, it needs to be pointed out that youth have a strong perception about not being independent
when choosing their future spouse, particularly among women (see Figure 7.12). Thus, the general perception
portrayed in many Bollywood movies and other TV series and novels, with romantic notions of falling in love
and choosing their partners is quite out of place, even among most youth from urban and higher income families.
Figure 7.11 Criteria for selecting a spouse
Figure 7.12 Independence to select future spouse (by age and gender)
Thus, the majority of the youth, agree on arranged marriages. During our FGDs an opinion that was often given
was that if the marriage does not work out, they can seek assistance from the family, an aspect particularly
addressed by young women. In the case of a love marriage, the blame for any failure would go to those who
dared to choose their own partner. One aspect, not covered in our questionnaire, but raised by men was the
Pleasant character
Good family
Higher social status
Good education
Good looking
Good relation
Interest in working
Good job
Having children
0 20 40 60 80 100
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
can not say
Male
Female
15-19
20-24
25-30
G
e
n
d
e
r
A
g
e
very independent
mostly independent
somewhat independent
not independent
do not know
0 20 40 60 80 100
Youth as Family and Community Members 85
mentality to live with in-laws. In regard to whether women should be allowed to work, there was the general
consensus that home and family members should not be neglected. Interestingly, urban men were more
interested in having wives who work. Among students, many of the women hoped that their future husbands
would be considerate enough to assist them in raising the children and allowing them to work.
7.6 Youth and their Leisure Activities
When considering childhood and youth, one of the major privileges, at least at first sight, is that a vast amount
of time can be spent on leisure. During this time, young people in particular can get engaged in various
activities, and these are discretionary and optional. While these activities are important for physical, social
and emotional development of young people, it also prepares them with functional and organisational skills
necessary for (later) employment. At the same time, it also provides an opportunity for the development of
belonging to a community and society. On the other hand, it also needs to be pointed out that leisure is also
characterised by vast social disparities, and a classical reference for this was provided by Veblen back in 1896,
calling the American upper class the leisure class.
For youth surveys, this is again a standard set of questions (see also deSouza et al. 2009, Hettige 2009; see also
Furlong 2009). For the BYS we thought it was quite crucial to gain more knowledge about the importance
of leisure activities of young people. At the same time it was a hotly debated issue to draft a list that is both
comprehensive and concise. The compromise was a list of fourteen leisure activities, including the aspect of
religious activities. Leisure activities include reading books and newspapers, listening to music, watching
TV, indoor and outdoor sports activities, or spending time with friends and family. As done for many other
topics, we asked our respondents about the importance of these activities, again in form of a four-tier scaling,
ranging from highly important and somewhat important to somewhat unimportant and highly
unimportant. Again, we were aware of the danger that youth might tend to attribute a high importance to
nearly all activities. In addition, we felt that among the list of 14 they might get tired and bored, or both, thus
rendering the entire exercise quite meaningless.
In order to avoid this, in a second step we have asked them to rank the five most important activities. For
these, we have also added questions for more detailed information, including amounts of time spent and
costs, as well as where these activities are taking place. One aspect that we had at the back of our minds
was the assumption that in the present digital era, young people are reading fewer books and spend more
time watching TV and browsing the internet. When asking about importance, this is confirmed even in rural
areas and among low income groups. Yet, when asking more detailed questions about actual priorities and
utilisation patterns, this shows a different picture.
Across South Asia, religion is considered a part of everyday life. It is embedded in the lives of the people
through prayers, regular rituals, religious festivals and holidays. The youth of Bangladesh grow up in a
religiously influenced environment, irrespective of the religious community they live in. Methodologically it
is difficult to include this in the list of leisure activities, particularly when combined with ranking. Among
the list of all 14 activities, religion is attributed the highest level of importance, at around 90 per cent of
all responses in the highly important. This answer was given irrespective of gender, age groups, income
groups, or locality. This was also confirmed during our FGDs, where many participants mentioned that they
did not say prayers regularly but that most of them fast and participate in religious festivals.
Overall, while ranking reading books, and newspapers, was given top priority. Reading is seen as quite an
86 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
important activity, and regional disparities are quite low. Approximately 72 per cent of all youth stated that
reading fiction books is highly important, in contrast to merely about 1 per cent who think that reading books
is not important. Similar figures were also given for reading newspapers. Overall, women have a slightly
stronger interest in books (74 compared to 70 per cent among men), whereas more men consider newspapers
to be important (73 compared to 66 per cent, respectively). A high interest was also stated for TV, among
both men and women. At the same time, there are slight locational disparities, as was already observed for
infrastructure and assets (see chapter 2.5, above). Yet, disparities are low, whereas 51 per cent among the
urban youth stated that TV is of high importance, this proportion was even 47 per cent among rural youth.
Interestingly, this figure is lowest in city corporations, at 41 per cent.
Compared to the importance given to religion and reading books, all other fields are much less important.
Spending time with their families was somewhat or highly important for about 70 per cent, with considerable
gender disparities (79 per cent among women but only 66 per cent among men). When ranked, this is mainly
of second or even third priority. This finding is slightly different from the British Councils Next Generation
study, which stated that identity of the youth of Bangladesh primarily revolves around their family and its
members. Whereas we had assumed that friends play an important role in the lives of the young people,
only about 25 per cent consider it highly important to spend time with friends, in addition to about 40
per cent who consider it to be somewhat important. Again, there is a pronounced gender pattern, while
among women the percentage was quite low (19 per cent), it was substantially higher among men (32 per
cent). Among women there was a high proportion (32 per cent) who even categorised it as somewhat
unimportant. Interestingly, and of quite a surprise for us, the overall ranking of this field was one of the
lowest (see Figure 7.14).
Figure 7.13 Importance of leisure activities Figure 7.14 Ranking of leisure activities
Among other leisure activities, indoor and outdoor games are only moderately popular. Only 20 per cent
of the youth found outdoor games important and this proportion was even lower for indoor games (10 per
cent). There is an interesting gender pattern, while men prefer outdoor games (29 per cent but only 9 per
cent among the women) women tend to prefer indoor games (13 per cent compared to 9 per cent). At the
same time, there is an openly stated lack of interest, and the proportion of youth who opted for somewhat
unimportant was quite high (approximately 40 per cent). Overall, we see this statement as being of high
political importance, as in Bangladesh, as in many other countries, the Ministry combines these two core
Reading books (novels etc,)
Reading newspapers
Watching TV
Religious activities
Spending time with family
Spending time with friends
Indoor games
Outdoor games
Shopping
Traveling
Listening to music
0 20 40 60 80 100
highly important
somewhat important
somewhat unimportant
highly unimportant
cannot say
0 2000 4000 6000
frst
second
third
Youth as Family and Community Members 87
functions, youth and sports. Given the low importance attributed to sports from most of the youth, we would
argue that this combination is quite unfortunate.
On the other hand, travelling was seen as much more important, with a nearly equal share of highly
important and somewhat important (approximately 40 per cent each). Gender disparities are moderate,
although travelling is slightly more important for men (at 45 per cent compared to 37 per cent among
women). At the same time, about 15 per cent of youth consider travelling to be unimportant, irrespective of
locality and gender. Listening to music also had similar responses, although in actual practice we would have
thought that this activity would be attributed a much higher importance. At the same time, only a few stated
that they thought it was unimportant (around 5 per cent).
One further aspect of leisure was in regard to fashion, as this was placed quite prominently in the Indian youth
survey (and particularly their denim cover page; see deSouza et al. 2010). From our readings, we had assumed
that young people have a particularly strong interest in dressing nicely and fashionably, and that they spend
a considerable amount of time and money on shopping. We also assumed that urban youth and women
would emphasise this much more. However, the BYS data indicate that clothes are of similar importance (of
about 36 to 41 per cent) in all localities, in addition to 44 - 46 per cent in the somewhat important category.
Interestingly, gender disparities are negligible. Yet again, when asked to rank this activity, the importance was
nearly negligible (see Figures 7.13 and 7.14, above).
7.7 Feeling of Independence
One last aspect in regard to youth and family was to get an understanding of whether and to what degree
they think they are independent. In Western concepts, youth is seen as a transitional period, and also one of
constant (re-)negotiations, between the young generation and their parents and other family members, in
order to establish some degree of independence. While in many South Asian countries this might be an issue
of low importance, we would argue that it might, at some stage, be a crucial indicator for social change. For
documenting this process, the current survey will hopefully provide an important baseline. Again, it was a
difficult task to conceptualise a handful of meaningful indicators that could most appropriately document
this process. We included aspects for some of the major decisions to be made in life, such as choosing schools,
future employment, friends, a future spouse, as well as aspects of daily relevance, such as how to spend
money and which clothes to buy, as well as exercising mobility, in general.
Overall, the respondents stated that they felt quite independent in regard to most aspects. An astonishingly
large proportion felt either very independent or at least mostly independent when choosing schools,
future employment, friends or clothes. Yet, given the low degree of education and integration into the labour
market it is questionable whether these answers are realistic or just hypothetical. On the other hand, one
aspect where there was an overwhelmingly strong perception about the lack of independence is the aspect
of choosing ones future spouse (see also chapter 7.4, above).
88 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
Figure 7.15 Youth and their perceptions about being independent
7.8 Acceptance of Social Change
When analysing social change, youth are usually depicted as being key agents. Some of these changes can be
quite visible and openly discussed, some can happen rather quietly. One example is that over the past 20 years
more women have pursued (higher) education and then taken professional careers. As a result, they are more
visible and active, although this phenomenon is often limited to urban areas. For a better understanding of
youth, their ideas about social change, and the acceptance, or non-acceptance of particular aspects, are quite
crucial. When tapping into these ideas, we have included issues such as gender equality, working women,
friendship with opposite gender, marriage without the consent of the parents, marriage at a later age, family
planning, divorce, study abroad and work abroad. Overall, the survey has shown some rather pronounced
patterns. While many aspects seem to have a general consensus, some other topics, such as divorce and
marriage without the consent of the parents, face an extremely strong opposition. Some controversial issues,
such as homosexuality and abortion, have not been included in this survey.
Topics where there is a wide consensus include gender equality, where nearly 81 per cent of the youth think
that it is acceptable. Within this group, a large majority even think that it is highly acceptable (two thirds of
those who agree). At the same time, gender disparities are quite substantial, whereas 78 per cent among the
women consider it to be highly important it is only 56 per cent among the men. A similar pattern was also
found for aspects of working women, and here gender disparities were even more extreme (76 per cent of
women versus 47 per cent of men). This has also been confirmed during our FGDs, where women put much
emphasis on establishing gender equality in all spheres of life, whereas men were much more reluctant to do
so. In some cases, their body language was even more agitated than their words. One even said that all the
NGOs and media were making women too liberated and thus they no longer appreciate their household
chores. In addition, because women had their own incomes, they felt independent and the rates of divorce
were going up as well. A few stated that there was already an acute shortage of work opportunities in
Bangladesh and now the women would pose additional competition.
As stated above, the two most extreme cases of dissent were divorce and marriage without the consent
of the parents. For the latter, 76 per cent mentioned that it was not only unacceptable but even highly
unacceptable. This confirms an aspect from the previous section, where about 95 per cent of the youth stated
Choose school
Choose friends
Exercise mobility
Buying clothes
How to spend money
Choose future spouse
Choose future employment
0 25 50 75 100
very independent
mostly independent
somewhat independent
not independent
do not know
Youth as Family and Community Members 89
that a most important role for their parents is the selection of their spouse, and that they felt quite restricted
not to follow that advice. This clearly shows that the young people are not only extremely hesitant but even
strongly opposed to the option of marrying the man/woman of their choice if the parents do not approve.

Similarly, divorce is, until today, religiously and culturally discouraged in South Asia. Again, about 85 per cent
of the respondents classified it as highly unacceptable. When further disaggregated, there are only minor
differences in regard to age, income groups, gender and localities. Similarly, when the BRAC RED team was
writing up their synthesis on youth in 2004, divorce was seen as a social risk for women. Respondents even
mentioned that they see marriage as the ultimate security for a woman and that there is no other socially
accepted status for women than a marriage (see Ali et al. 2006, several sections).
Compared to the findings from the Indian and Sri Lankan Youth Surveys this shows a much higher degree
of conservatism. In the Indian Survey, quite a number of youth mentioned that marriages may not work and
instead of destroying ones life, the couple should have divorce (deSouza et al. 2010, 29). Similarly, the Sri
Lankan youth survey portrayed a negative opinion regarding divorce, only 65 per cent (Hettige and Mayer
2002 and Hettige 2010, 20ff ).
Figure 7.16 Acceptance of Social Change

Figure 7.17 Acceptance of Social Change
Gender equality
Working women
Friends with opp. Gender
Marriage without parents' consent
Late marriage
Family planning
Divorce
Study abroad
Work abroad
highly acceptable
somehow acceptable
somehow inacceptable
highly in-acceptable
can not say
0 20 40 60 80 100
City corp.
Urban
Rural
Male
Female

0 20 40 60 80 100
highly acceptable
somehow acceptable
somehow inacceptable
highly in-acceptable
can not say
90 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
C

H

A

P

T

E

R
8
Challenges and Opportunities
Sylhet xii/2011
92 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
8.1 Challenges and Policy Implications
One common aspect of most youth studies and youth surveys is to address youth as a critical phase of life. This
implies that many challenges need to be handled, not only by the youth themselves but also by those who
guide and guard them. The latter refers to both the parents and the state, and ideally the two operate hand in
hand in order to facilitate that these transitional phases are as smooth as possible. On the other hand, youth
policies often do not meet these criteria, and focus on aspects that are of less relevance for young people, for
instance, sport activities. In addition, youth policies also often focus on providing services for those who need
the support least, as their parents or other guardians are moderately well off and could safeguard the needs
of their offspring quite well on their own. On the other hand, in a large number of families, and often those
with a larger number of children, parents are not in a position to support their offspring to the extent that they
need, and deserve.
Thus, it is particularly the latter group who need the strongest and most comprehensive support from the
state - but who are also the ones who are least likely to get it. The World Bank, in their World Development
Report The Next Generation argues that youth policy often fails young people (ibid. 2006, 214ff ). In their
analysis they point out that this is mainly due to poor coordination of policies, the weak voice of young people
in monitoring, as well as due to the paucity of proven success (ibid.). From our angle of governance studies we
would add that a comprehensive understanding of youth and the challenges they perceive is quintessential
for fine tuning any youth policy. In addition, such an exercise also allows for better targeting of resources and
interventions.
In this last chapter we will briefly elaborate on what young people think are the major challenges in their
lives. As done last year for defining democracy, we have included this as the only open-ended question,
and overall, the responses were both concentrated and wide ranging (see chapter 8.2). This chapter will also
briefly discuss how young people perceive their own situation vis-a-vis other groups, in terms of advantages
and disadvantages (see chapter 8.3). This is followed by crucial feed back and ideas on what young people
think the government could be doing in order to support them (see chapter 8.4). One positive aspect is that,
overall, there is a vast optimism about the future (see chapter 8.5). The last sub-chapter briefly provides some
concluding remarks for this survey.
8.2 Discussing Major Challenges
One of the core objectives of our survey was to find out what young people perceive as major challenges in
their lives. In order to do this, the survey included a set of options and we asked them what they consider
as their priorities. Overall, there were several major concerns, and the one mentioned most frequently was
getting a good education. Similarly, finding employment, securing and maintaining good health were also
mentioned by a large number. Again, while asking for levels of agreement, results showed a strong agreement
on a variety of issues. Yet, when asking about priorities, the pattern was much more focussed and revealing. In
addition, we started off this section by asking them an open-ended question about what they thought were
the major challenges faced by young people in the country.
Our list of challenges focussed on what we thought were the main needs for young people. As discussed in
our methodology chapter, the FGDs that we have carried out both prior to and during the quantitative part
of the Bangladesh Youth Survey were quite crucial in our understanding of what young people thought were
critical issues. The list includes getting a good education, finding employment, food security and maintaining
good health, as well as maintaining political stability, coping with natural disasters, coping with increasing
costs of living and the widening gap of rich and poor. When asked for importance, between 85 and 94 per
cent ranked most issues as important, and most of them even as highly important. Yet, when ranked, the
pattern was much clearer. Overall, good health had the highest proportion as the first priority, whereas
education had the highest cumulative share, when first, second and third priorities were added. If we had
weighted these rankings, as done last year for the Governance Barometer Survey, the priority of health would
have been more explicit. This clearly indicates the need for further studies that also include health related
topics. On the other hand, coping with natural disasters had the lowest rank (3 per cent even when taken
cumulatively), followed by political instability, income inequality and price hike.
Methodologically it was quite interesting to compare the different patterns of response from the overall feed
back of priorities versus the ranking. At the same time, both were based on our list of what we thought
priorities could be. Although this had been the result of comprehensive FGDs there could have been more
or less pronounced biases while (pre-) selecting these issues. When addressing this topic in the form of an
open-ended question, an overwhelming response was given for unemployment, with nearly double the
number of responses than for the next two challenges, illiteracy and lack of money. Yet, the latter was also
implicitly covered in a similar answer, namely poverty (ranked fifth). If seen cumulatively, this was mentioned
as prominently as unemployment (see Figure 8.2). A rather strange pattern is that health was not mentioned
prominently when respondents could provide their own list of three major challenges. There, health was only
mentioned as a priority by less than 1 per cent.

Figure 8.1 Major challenges seen by young people (ranked priorities)
Figure 8.2 Major challenges seen by young people (open-ended)
Some of these challenges are common regardless of gender, income, locality, and at times even class. The top

Widening gap between rich and poor
Maintaining political stability
Coping with natural disasters
Caping with increasing costs of living
Finding employment
Getting a good education
Securing food security
Maintaining good health
0 20 40 60 80 100
rank 1
rank 2
rank 3
Challenges and Opportunites 93
0 1000 2000 3000 4000 5000
Eve teasing
Dowry
Early marriage
Poverty
Drug addiction
Lack of
Illiteracy
Unemployment
total number of responses
frequency
94 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
issues included securing a moderately good standard of education and employment. Yet, there are distinctive
issues for various social groups and we will briefly discuss these in this section. For rural youth, it was quite
important to have educational institutions nearby, good teachers and that families would have financial
solvency to prevent drop-outs. Poverty was identified as one of the main reasons for dropping out of school,
a concern that has been stated in many other studies. Young parents in particular are highly worried whether
they will be able to send their children to school and, above all, to afford to keep them there. Besides financial
insolvency, educational institutional inadequacies are identified as a reason for hampering education. While
the shortage of teachers in government schools was also an issue, it was even more of a concern that the
mentality of the teachers towards their work was critical. Issues mentioned were the teachers failure to
provide quality education whilst encouraging students to participate in private tuition classes. For many
youth from lower income families this was a major challenge in their own lives, and the fear of facing a similar
situation for their own children was quite high.
Unemployment was also considered one of the critical concerns for young people, across all income groups
and employment sectors. During the FGDs with students, both in colleges and at universities, many have
stated that they are continuing their higher studies not only for the sake of studying but also because they
could not find what they thought was adequate employment when trying to do so. They pointed out that
the job market is highly corrupt and manipulated. Many stated that either family or (party) political networks
and money are the most common determinants in accessing jobs. One frequent comment was that among
their friends and fellow students the ones who got jobs were not the best students. While this pattern was
particularly prominent for government jobs, many youth also voiced their concerns that the private sector, as
well as the development sector, operated in similar ways. Similary, many young people from low and middle
income families felt quite disillusioned and some even highly frustrated, as they said they felt marginalised
and forgotten by the state. Neither educational results nor a high vocational or technical skill level nor merit
or qualification were of any particular relevance. Some of them stated that they thought about becoming self
employed but due to lack of capital they could not start any business or agricultural enterprise.
Other issues that were mentioned regularly, by both male and female youth, were concerns about social
security. Men are mostly concerned that the law and order situation is deteriorating gradually and that rates
of crime are increasing. The law enforcement agencies are equally corrupt and they harass those who need
their help most, and the police are generally highly distrusted. Women tend to worry more about social
security at the family and community level. For them, social norms and regulations pose a severe challenge.
This also includes ideas that education for women is less important than for men, and that men, rather then
the entire family, are responsible for the main decisions to be made in the household.
8.3 Assessing (Dis-)Advantages
While conceptualising this survey, our assumption was that young people might tend to see their situation
rather pessimistically. If that were the case, it would then have been interesting to find out about their
understanding of other peoples lack of privileges. As young people generally see their situation quite
optimistically (or at least they have stated that they do so) this question was not as important as we would
have thought.
Nevertheless, it is of interest to tap into young peoples ideas about whom they perceive as disadvantaged
groups. Among the specific groups we suggested for comparison were rural and urban youth, as well as ethnic
Challenges and Opportunites 95
and religious minorities. Overall, when comparing their own standard of living to youth in general, about 25
per cent stated that their situation is very high and an additional 60 per cent stated that it was moderately
high. Among these, there was a strong statement that their situation was much better than for rural poor,
in particular. While urban poor are seen as disadvantaged by half the youth, their own situation in relation to
rural poor is either high (42-48 per cent) or even very high (45-49 per cent), resulting in a cumulative share of
about 90 per cent of the total respondents. Overall, neither gender nor locational disparities were very strong
(see Figures 8.3 and 8.4).
Figure 8.3 Assessing their own situation compared to Figure 8.4 Assessing their own situation
other youth compared to rural poor
8.4 What the State Could Do
While assessing the major challenges is an important exercise in encouraging youth to think about their
lives, it is also of interest to see how they would assess the role of the state, or rather the government, to
support them. One way of capturing this was to ask about the level of agreement (or disagreement) about
what should be the most important policy measures. Again, this was further refined by adding a ranking, in a
second step. As discussed before, the high level of agreement provided no clear pattern. Yet, when asked for
ranking, there was an overwhelming consensus that improving the quality of education was a major task
that young people would want the government to do. Compared to this, even the provision of employment
was only secondary (see Figure 8.5).
From these answers, it is quite obvious that youth regard education, and improved service provisions, as
a quintessential task. For more than 80 per cent of them this is even more essential than generating more
jobs. This high number also indicates that it is a cross-cutting concern, irrespective of gender and locality, or
socio-economic groups. At the same time, the creation of employment is also a major issue to nearly a fifth
of all young people (16 per cent), again across all income groups. When combining first and second priorities,
the number of young people who have given employment as a government priority is even higher than
for education. This clearly indicates that this perception is again shared by youth irrespective of locality and
income groups. Interestingly, it is also irrespective of gender, although women are hardly integrated into the
labour market, as discussed above.
When considering third priorities, there is a more specific gender pattern. Prevention of crime but also gender
friendly policies have been mentioned most frequently. Among all respondents who addressed gender-
friendly policies, more than 70 per cent were women while men gave a stronger priority to more general
0 20 40 60 80 100
City corp.
Urban
Rural
Male
Female
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
G
e
n
d
e
r
very high
moderately high
belowaverage
very low

0 20 40 60 80 100
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
G
e
n
d
e
r
very high
moderately high
below average
very low
do not know/not applicable
City corp.
Urban
Rural
Male
Female
96 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
issues, such as a corruption free business environment (see Figure 8.6). At the same time, in terms of policy
requirements the latter ask for much more comprehensive approaches than the sectoral ones for education
and employment.
Figure 8.5 What the State could do
Figure 8.6 Third priority of youth policies (by gender)
8.5 Bangladesh Youth and their Optimism about the Future
One core feature of young people, irrespective of locality and social status, is their pronounced optimism
about the future. This phenomenon was already pointed out in our Governance Barometer Survey 2010.
Generally, assessments about the standard of living of their parents household are moderately high, even
among those from lower income households. Gender disparities are quite low, as are disparities based on
locality. At the same time, only a minority of 15 per cent assess their parents standard of living as very high.
On the other hand, when assessing their own standard of living after two years time, the majority opted for
very high, irrespective of gender and age groups (see Figure 8.8). This optimism is even higher when asked
about the standard of living after five years, when 70 per cent see themselves in the very high group.
Gender friendly policies
Corruption free business
Environment pervent crimes
Provide social security
Invest more in the IT sector
Efcient administration
Generate more job opportunities
Improve quality of education
total number of responses
0 1500 3000 4500 6000
rank 1
rank 2
rank 3

0 200 400 600 800 1000
Efcient Administration
Invest more in the IT sector
Provide social security
prevent crimes
Corruption free business
Environment
Gender friendly policy
total number of cases
female
male
Figure 8.7 Assessing their parents standard of living
Figure 8.8 Assessing their own standard of living after two years
8.6 The Bangladesh Youth Survey - Some Afterthoughts
When conceptualising the Bangladesh Youth Survey we had in mind to provide a piece of research on youth
in Bangladesh that is both conscise and comprehensive. Initially we had intended to write up two major types
of reports, a summary report of about 50 pages, for sharing our findings soon after the actual survey, as well as
a full report (of about 150 pages). Yet, while being enaged in the analysis and writing up, we felt that the data
is so rich that it is hardly possible to summarise this in any brief form. We would even argue that the current
report, in terms of data analysis, provides a brief glimpse about what we thought is most important from the
survey and the research that was done along with it. At the same time, we also feel that this is the tip of the
iceberg and we will certainly draw on the data base in many other ways. We also plan to share it with those
who are interested in further analyses, while acknowledging the joint intellectual property rights of IGS and
the funding agencies (SDC, UNDP and ANSA South Asia).
As stated in the introduction, we have already presented some of these findings at our Joint Regional Conference
in Colombo in March 2012. The discussions for these three papers on education, political engagement and IT
have inspired us for further analyses and readings, and this will certainly remain an ongoing exercise for quite
a while. We also hope that this report will inspire other reaserch teams, whether national or regional, to enter
into a dialogue with us and to carry out further analyses, and possibly engage in comparative studies. Such
studies could be either based on existing data bases or conceptualise new research, as for instance on health
Challenges and Opportunites 97

City corpo.
Urban
Rural
Male
Female
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
G
e
n
d
e
r
0 20 40 60 80 100
very high
moderately high
below average
very low
do not know/not applicable
City corp.
Urban
Rural
Male
Female
L
o
c
a
t
i
o
n
G
e
n
d
e
r
very high
moderately high
below average
very low
do not know/not applicable
0 20 40 60 80 100
98 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
and gender. Our up-coming national dissemination workshops, in Dhaka as well as elsewhere in the country,
will hopefully also contribute to gaining further interest for this study and sparking debate.
In addition, for the South Asian region, we hope to inspire research teams who will be interested to engage in
similar types of research. Research and policy teams from South Asian countries that have already participated
in the last conference were from India (CSDS and Lucknow University), Sri Lanka (Colombo University and
Open University), Nepal (Social Science Baha), Bhutan (unicef and Ministry of Youth) and Pakistan (British
Council and UNDP), and thus covering nearly the entire South Asian region. Ideally, within a few years there
will be a series of similarly comprehensive studies across the region, and possibly even elsewhere. If so, this
would provide a unique set of insights about social and political change among youth, and allow for regional
comparisons. Hopefully, we can also organise similar conferences in the near future, to exchange and critically
discuss these findings and learn from each other.
Last but not least, by setting up a network among scholars, policy makers and development partners, we also
hope to strengthen both the research interest and capacity but also the critical linkages between these core
stakeholders. While completing this report was a major task, we also see this as a starting point, rather than
the completion of this project. By engaging in and providing this comprehensive analysis, we primarily aim to
encourage policy makers and development partners to critically assess our analyses and engage in a dialogue
in regard to possible, or even necessary, policy implications. By doing so, we aim at strengthening a policy
reform process. Thus, ideally, this study will set in motion a country wide policy dialogue between youth and
those who aim at supporting and strenghtening youth policies.
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Table A1

Ages of getting married (for women)


Non 15 or less 16 to 17 18 to 20 21 to 24
25 and
above
15 96.77 3.23 - - - -
16 89.11 3.96 5.941 - - -
17 87.59 3.55 8.156 - - -
18 60.67 7.62 20.43 10.67 - -

26 6.41 12.18 36.54 33.33 8.97 2.56
27 5.37 11.83 37.63 36.56 7.53 1.07
28 6.43 17.14 24.29 41.43 7.14 3.57
29 5.95 22.62 21.43 32.14 11.9 5.95
Table A2 Ages when studying in diferent classes

Age Class 1 Class 5 Class 8 Class 10 Class 12 Graduation
5
1106
6
3175
7
1384 3
8
437 18
9
46 199
10
37 1479
11
2625
12
1113 188
13
304 1272
14
109 1993 62
15
37 747 613
16
216 1217 47
17
56 385 245 3
18
22 129 543 13
19
32 201 13
20
69 28
21
27 22
22
8 42
23
35
24
30
25
23
Sub -total 6185 5887 4494 2438 1140 209

never attended
20 318 1711 3767 5065 5996
Pc. of never
attending 0. 3 5. 1 27. 6 60. 7 81. 6 96. 6
Total no.
included 6205 6205 6205 6205 6205 6205

A N N E X
Annex 109
Table A4 (Self-) Assessment of Computer Skills

Location Gender Age Income

City
corp. Urban Rural Male Fem.
15-
19
20-
24
25-
30
<
5000
5-
7500
TK
7500-
10000
TK
10-
15000
TK
>
15001
TK


Total

Highly
skilled
9.6 3.0 1.9 4.1 0.9 2.0 3.4 2.4 0.6 1.6 2.1 3.2 5.9
2.5
Somewhat
skilled
21.9 16.7 10.9 18.8 6.9 15.6 14.3 7.6 7.6 7.0 11.3 15.7 24.6
12.9
Limited
skills
11.6 8.3 6.7 9.0 5.6 9.2 6.5 5.7 5.7 6.1 7.3 8.8 9.2
7.3
Totally
unskilled
49.8 62.8 68.6 59.6 72.9 63.0 65.2 71.6 75.5 76.3 67.5 60.7 48.5
66.3
Do not
know
7.1 9.3 11.9 8.5 13.6 10.2 10.5 12.7 10.6 9.0 11.8 11.6 11.8
11.0

Table A5 (Self-) Assessment of Internet Skills
Location Gender Age Income

City
corp. Urban Rural Male
15-
19
20-
24
25-
30
Up
to
5000
5001
-
7500
TK
7501
-
10000
TK
10001
-
15000
TK
15001
TK
and
above



Total

Highly
skilled
10.0 3.0 1.6 3.9 0.7 2.4 2.7 1.8 0.6 1.5 1.7 2.1 6.5
2.3
Somewhat
skilled
15.4 10.2 6.4 12.8 2.7 8.7 8.8 5.6 3.1 3.2 7.0 10.3 16.9
7.8
Limited
skills
8.7 5.7 4.8 6.9 3.5 6.3 5.3 3.6 4.1 4.3 4.6 6.7 6.9
5.2
Totally
unskilled
55.9 70.3 72.8 65.7 77.1 70.4 70.6 73.5 79.4 79.6 72.6 67.1 55.5 71.3
Do not
know
10.0 10.8 14.5 10.8 16.0 12.2 12.7 15.6 12.9 11.3 14.2 13.8 14.2 13.4

Table A6 What could the state do to improve the lives of young people

rank 1 rank 2 rank 3 pc/1 pc/2 pc/3

Improve quality of education 5350 4 5

81.4 0.1 0.1

Generate more job opportunities 1064 4385 2

16.2 66.7 0.0

Efcient Administration 62 647 997

0.9 9.8 15.2

Invest more in the IT sector 40 429 636

0.6 6.5 9.7

Provide social security 36 587 1155

0.5 8.9 17.6

Prevent crimes 23 357 1412

0.3 5.4 21.5

Corruption free business environment 166 1113

0.0 2.5 16.9

Gender friendly policies

1255

0.0 0.0 19.1


Fem.
Table A3 Reading websites as a media of learning about the state (by locality)

Total
Highly
important
Somewhat
important
Somewhat

Highly
unimportant
Cannot
say

City
corporation
96 115 64 14 22 311
Urban 644 554 232 57 173 1660
Rural 1557 1655 661 201 530 4604
Total 2297 2324 957 272 725 6575

unimportant
110 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
I I n nf f o or r m me ed d C Co on ns se en nt t

Salam/Adab, My name is ______. I am from Nielsen Bangladesh, an International Research Firm. At
present we are conducting a survey on public perception. I want to take your interview as a part of this
survey. Your opinion and cooperation is very important to us. Your opinion is very important for the
development of this country. It will take 60 miniutes for the interview and it will be really helpful for us
if you kindly spare some of your valuable times for this interview. Your answer will be totally voluntary.
If you are unwilling to answer any of the questions or feel embarrass to answer you may stop the
interview any time you want. The information you will provide will be fully confdential and will be
used in research purpose only.

mvjvg - Av`ve| Avwg .....................| Avwg Nielsen Bangladesh bvgi GKwU AvZRvwZK MelYv cwZvb
_K GmwQ| eZgvb Avgiv GKwU RbgZ Rwic cwiPvjbv KiwQ| GB MelYvi Ask wnme Avwg Avcbvi
mvvZKvi wbZ PvB| Avcbvi g~jevb Z_ Avgv`i Rb LyeB iyZc~Y| Avcbvi `qv Z_ ev gZvgZ `ki
mvgwMK Dbqb mnvqZv Kie| m~Y mvvZKviwU wbZ cvq 60 wgwbU mgqi cqvRb ne, Avi Avkv Kwi
Avcwb G evcvi AvgvK mnhvwMZv Kieb| Avcwb PvBj mvvZKvi PjvKvj h Kvb GKwU cki Di bvI
w`Z cvib ev cyiv mvvZKviwU e Ki w`Z cvieb| Avcbvi `qv Z_ m~Y Mvcb ivLv ne Ges Zv
aygv MelYvi KvR eenvi Kiv ne|

District Upazila Union
Rjv

DcRjv

BDwbqb

Village Mouza/Ward Location
Category
City Corporation 1
Mvg

gRv/IqvW

wmwU Kcvikb
Respondents Age (in complete
years
Di`vZvi eqm (c~Y eQi)
Urban 2
kni
Rural 3
Mvg

SECTION A: Household Roster

QA1 Who are the Household members living in this address? [Please check all that apply and list the
numbers]
GLvb emevmKvix Lvbvi m`m Kviv? (eqmi g Abymvi eo _K QvU mevi bvg wjLyb Ges h_vh_ KvW
Kiyb)

No. Respondents
Relationship with HH
cwievi cavbi mv_
mK (KvW)
Sex:(M-1,
F-2)/
wj: cyiyl -
1, gwnjv-2
Age (In
complete
years)
eqm (c~Y eQi)
Level of Education (Last
class completed)
wkvMZ hvMZv (mekl
h kYx chZ coQb)
Marital
Status
eevwnK
Aev
Primary
occupation
g~j ckv
1. 1 2
2. 1 2
3. Selected respondents code (1-10)
Rwic Di`vZvi KvW (1-10 Gi gvS)

4. Total number of household members /Lvbvi gvU m`m msLv



A. Relation with HH head code: 1=Family Head, 2=Husband/Wife, 3=Son, 4=Daughter,
5=Father/Mother, 6=Father In Law/Mother In Law, 7=Grandmother/Grandfather , 8=Grand Daughter/
Grand Son, 9=Sister in Laws/Brother in Laws ( endorsed with code 15), 10=Brother/Sister/, 11=Paternal/
Maternal Uncle, 12=Son in Law/Daughter In Law, 13=Cousins, , 14=Niece/Nephew, 15=Other
Relatives, 16= Housemaid
Lvbv cavbi mv_ mKRwbZ KvW: 1=cwievi cavb, 2=^vgx/x, 3=cy, 4= Kbv, 5=evev/gv, 6=
ki/kvwo, 7=`v`v/`v`x, 8=bvwZ/bvZwb, 9=kvjK/kvwjKv, 10=fvB/evb, 11=PvPv/gvgv, 12=RvgvB/cyeay,
13=PvPvZ/gvgvZ/dzdvZv/LvjvZfvB/evb, 14=fvM/fvMx, 15=Abvb AvZxq, 16=MncwiPviK/MncwiPvwiKv
D. Level of education code: Write in 1, 2, 3, 11, 13 etc. format.
wkvMZ hvMZvi KvW (mekl h kYx ch Z coQb) : 1,2,3,11 GB fve wjLyb
E. 1=Married, 2=Unmarried, 3=Divorced, 4=Separated, 5=Deserted
eevwnK Aev KvW : 1=weevwnZ, 2=AweevwnZ, 3=weqi ci ZvjvK nq MQ, 4=eZgvb Avjv`v evm Kib,
5=cwiZv/cwiZvv
F. Primary Occupation Code: 1=Student, 2=Housewife, 3=Self employed (agri), 4=Self-employed
(non-agri), 5=Day-labourer (agri), 6=Day labourer (non-agri), 7=Regular job holder (govt.), 8=Regular
job holder (non-govt.), 9=Unemployed, 10=Irregular service-holder (govt./non-govt.), 11=Political
Leader, 12=Employed to NGO, 13=School teacher, 14=Journalist, 15=College/ University teacher,
16=Advocate/Lawyer/Barrister, 17=Doctor (at least MBBS), 18=Local govt. representative (current or
former), 19=Madrassa teacher, 20=Retired person, 21= Rickshaw/van puller/Bus driver/Truck driver,
22= Industrial worker, Others (Specify)....
Di`vZvi g~j ckv mwKZ KvW: 1= Qv, 2=Mwnbx, 3=^wbqvwRZ KvR (Kwl), 4=^wbqvwRZ KvR (Kwl
KvR Qvov), 5=w`bgRyi (Kwl), 6=w`bRgyi (Kwl eZxZ), 7=wbqwgZ PvKzixRxex (miKvwi), 8=wbqwgZ
PvKzwiRxex (emiKvwi), 9=eKvi, 10=AwbqwgZ PvKzwiRxex (miKvwi, emiKvwi), 11=ivRbwZK bZv,
12=GbwRIZ PvKzwiiZ, 13=zj wkK, 14=mvsevw`K, 15=KjR/ wekwe`vjq wkK, 16=AvBbRxex
(GWfvKU/evwivi), 17=wPwKrmK (GgweweGm cvk), 18=cvb/eZgvb vbxq miKvi cwZwbwa, 19=gv`vmv
wkK, 20=Aemicv, 21=wiKmvPvjK/ fvbPvjK/ evm I UvK WvBfvi, 22=wk kwgK, Abvb (DjL Kiyb)
......
Annex 111
112 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
QA2 Does your household (or any member of the household) have any of the following items in
working codition? (Multiple response)
[Please note that items in not working condition would mean that they are permanently irreparable
or out of order and should not be included]

Avcbv`i Lvbvq Kvb m`mi wb wjwLZ ejv AvQ wK? e (mvKj) Kiyb (GKvwaK Di nZ cvi) bvUt
GKevi b nq MQ Ggb wKQy wnmei ga Avbeb bv|

No. Main assets Yes No No
msLv
A2.1 Family house/ apartment cvwievwiK evwo/ GcvUgU 1 2
A2.2 Bed/s weQvbv 1 2
A2.3 Fridge wdR 1 2
A2.4 TV wUwf 1 2
A2.5 Bicycle/s evB mvBKj 1 2
A2.6 Other non-motorised gvUiwenxb Abvb hvb 1 2
A2.7 Motorbike/s gvUimvBKj 1 2
A2.8 Car/s Mvwo 1 2
A2.9 Mobile phone/s gvevBj dvb 1 2
A2.10 Approximate monthly income
(guardian/parents/if seperaed-
write it by own)
AvbyygvwbK gvwmK Avq (AwffveKi)/ gv
evev/ wbRi Lvbv (hw` c_K _vK)


______Taka

QA3: Food security/ Lv` wbivcv

No. Questions and Filters CC* Code Skip
QA3.1


Do you produce food for
your house?
Avcwb wK Avcbvi Lvbvi Rb Lv`
Drcv`b Kib?
Yes 1 QA3.2
No 2 QA4
QA3.2


For how many months do
you have sufcient food in
2011?
2011 mvj KZ gvm Avcbvi Lvbvq
chv cwigvY Lv` gRy` wQj?
..Months
NA/cb**

99

* Coding Categories ** Not applicable (NA) chvR bq (cb)

QA4: As you know that there are diferent classes in society, I would like to know the social status and
income of yourself in your opinion

Avcwb Zv Rvbb h, mgvR wewfb aibi kYx AvQ (hgb- DPwe, gawe BZvw`)| Avcbvi gZ, Avcbvi
Av_-mvgvwRK Aevb Kv_vq? [hw` Di`vZv evev gvi Lvbv _K c_K _vK Dfq wRvmv Kiyb]

No UC UMC MC LMC WC NA

Dwe Dgwe gwe wbgwe wbwe cb
A4.1 Parents Household evev-gvi Lvbv 1 2 3 4 5 9
A4.2 Own household (if
seperated)
wbRi Lvbv (hw` c_K _vK) 1 2 3 4 5 9

Upper class (UC), Upper Middle Class (UMC), Lower Middle Class (LMC), Working Class(WC)

DPwe (Dwe), DP gawe (Dgwe), wb gawe (wbgwe) , wbwe (wbwe), chvR bq (cb)
SECTION B: Socio-economic Background of Youths

QB1Now I would like to know about your educational background.
Avcbvi wkvRxeb mK Z_ w`b|

No.

Questions and Filters CC* Code Skip
B1.1 Did you ever go to
school?
Avcwb wK KLbI zj
wMqQb?
Yes 1 Q B1.2
No 2 Q B2
B1.2 Are you currently
reading in school?
Avcwb wK eZgvb
jLvcov KiQb?
Yes 1 Q B1.4
No 2 Q B1.3
B1.3 Please tell the drop
out age

hw` bv nq, Zvnj
Kvb eqm _K
jLvcov KiQb bv?

years

B1.4 What was your age
in given classes of
study?
Class/kYx

Type of
school
(see code)/
yji aib
(KvW `L
ejyb)
Age of
starting(in
complete
years)/ Avcbvi
GB kYx My jvZ
covi mgq eqm
NA/
c b
Class 1 1g kYx 1 9
Class 5 5g kYx 2 9
Class 8 8g kYx 3 9
S.S.C. completed Gm.Gm.wm.
cvk
4 9
H.S.C. completed GBP.Gm.wm.
cvk
5 9
Graduate and
above
vZK A_ev
vZKvi
6 9
B2.2.5 Code: 1=Government, 2=Private, 3=NGO school, 4=From family members/friends, 5=Others
yji aib KvW: 1= , 2=miKvwi, 3=emiKvwi, 4=GbwRI zj, 5=gv`vmv, 6=AcvwZvwbK
cv_wgK wkv, 7=Abvb
* Coding Categories
wekwe`vjq
Annex 113
114 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
QB2 Please tell about your experiences of vocational and technical training.
Avcbvi KvwiMwi cwkYi AwfZv mK ejyb|

No. Questions and Filters CC* Code Skip
B2.1 Did you have any vocational or
technical training?
Avcwb wK Kvb KvwiMwi cwkY
wbqQb?
Yes 1 Q B2.2
No 2 Q B3.B
B2.2 Please mention the details of your vocational and technical training.
`qv Ki Avcbvi KvwiMwi/ ewg~jK cwkYi ejyb|
B2.2.1
Type of
training
B2.2.2
Age (in
complete years)
B2.2.3
How many
days
B2.2.4
Hours in a
week
B2.2.5
Type of school
(see code)
B2.2.6
Cost of training
Tk No cost
cwkYi
aiY
KZ eQi eqm
(c~Y eQi)
cwkYi
mgqKvj/w`b
mvn KZ
NUv Kvk?
zji aiY
(KvW `Lyb)
cwkYi eq
UvKv Kvb eq
nqwb
1.

99
2. 99
3. 99
4. 99
5. 99
B2.2.5 Code: 1=Government, 2=Private, 3=NGO school, 4=From family members/friends, 5=Others
KvW : 1=miKvwi, 2=emiKvwi, 3=GbwRI zj, 4=cwievii m`m/ezi KvQ _K, 5=Abvb
*Coding Categories

No. Questions CC* Code Skip
Q B3.A Do you have any experience of regular paid or unpaid work?
Avcbvi wK A_i wewbgq ev A_ Qvov KvR Kivi AwfZv AvQ?
Yes 1 Q B3.B
No 2 Q B4
*Coding Categories

QB3.B Please tell about your experience of regular paid/unpaid work
Avcbvi KvRi AwfZv (UvKvi wewbgq Ges UvKv Qvov DfqB) mK ejyb|

No. 1. Age (in
complete
years)
2. For how
long
3.
Hours/
week
4.
Sector
5. Income
(Tk/month)
6.
N/A


Year Month

eqm (c~Y
eQi)
KZ w`b
KiQb?
mvn/
NUv
KvRi

Avq (UvKv/
gvm)
c b*

eQi gvm
B3B.1 Current work eZgvb
KvR
9
B3B.2 First unpaid
work
c_g UvKv
Qvov KvR
9
B3B.3 First paid
work
c_g UvKvi
wewbgq
KvR
9
B3B.4 Work with
highest
salary/wage
mevP
eZb Kiv
KvR
9
B3B.5 Longest
period of
work
mePq
ewk mgq
ai KvR
9
4. Sector (coding): 1=Agriculture, 2=Industry, 3=Trade, 4=Govt. services, 5=Other service sectors, 6=
Others
4. KvRi i KvW: 1=Kwl, 2=wk, 3=eemv, 4=miKvwi PvKzix , 5=Abvb PvKzix, 6 =Abvb;
*cb - chvR bq

QB4 Now I would like to know your experience of unemployment.
Avcbvi eKviZi AwfZvi K_v ejyb|

No. Questions and Filters CC* Code Skip
B4.1 Have you ever been unemployed?
(Unemployed: those who couldnt
manage job after seeking for 3
months)
Avcwb wK KLbI eKvi wQjb?
(eKvi ejZ 3 gvm ai GKvavi
KvR LyuR KvR bv cvIqv evSvq)
Yes 1 Q B4.2
No 2 Q B5
B4.2 Are you currently unemployed?

Avcwb wK eZgvb eKvi? Yes 1
No 2
Please mention the details of your experience of unemployment.
[ay hviv KLbv eKvi wQj ev eZgvb eKvi Zv`i ck Kiyb]
`qv Ki Avcbvi eKviZi weZvwiZ ejyb|
1. Age
(starting
age)
KZ eQi
eqm
(ii eqm)
2. Duration
KZ eQi/gvm eKvi
wQjb
3. Source of
getting work
(see coding)
KvR cvwi
Drm (KvW
`L wjLyb)
4.
N/A

cb**

Years
eQi
Months
gvm
B4.3 First phase of
unemployment
1g Ke eKvi
wQjb
9
B4.4 Last phase of
unemployment
kl Ke eKvi
wQjb
9
B4.5 Longest phase of
unemployment
eKviZi
`xNZg mgq
9
Coding for source of new work: 1=Family, 2=Friends, 3=Political afliation, 4=Youth groups,
5=Advertisement, 6=Other groups
KvR cvwi Drmi KvW: 1=cwievi, 2=ez, 3=ivRbwZK cfve, 4=hye m`vq, 5=wevcb 6=Abvb
* Coding Categories **cb - chvR bq

B3B.4 Work with
highest
salary/wage
mevP
eZb Kiv
KvR
9
B3B.5 Longest
period of
work
mePq
ewk mgq
ai KvR
9
4. Sector (coding): 1=Agriculture, 2=Industry, 3=Trade, 4=Govt. services, 5=Other service sectors, 6=
Others
4. KvRi i KvW: 1=Kwl, 2=wk, 3=eemv, 4=miKvwi PvKzix , 5=Abvb PvKzix, 6 =Abvb;
*cb - chvR bq

Annex 115
116 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
QB4A What is your preferable occupation based on your qualifcation?
hvMZv Abyhvqx Avcbvi cQ`bxq ckv mK ejyb|

NO CC* Code Skip
B4A.1 What is your preferable
occupation?(see occup. code)
Avcwb Kvb ckvq hZ Pvb ev
PqwQjb? (ckv mwKZ KvW `Lyb)

B4A.2 Preferable occupation
(sector)( see sector code)
Avcbvi cQ`bxq ckvi ejyb
(mim& KvW `Lyb)

B4A.3 Do you plan to work
elsewhere (place)?
Avcbvi wK Ab KvbI vb KvR Kivi
cwiKbv AvQ?
Yes 1 B4A.4
No 2 QB5
B4A.4 If plan to take up work
elsewhere: where (see
migration codes)
hw` Avcbvi Ab Kv_vI KvR Kivi
cwiKbv _vK Zv Kv_vq? (gvBMkb
KvW `Lyb)

Occupation Code: 1=Student, 2=Housewife, 3=Self employed (agri), 4=Self-employed (non-agri),
5=Day-labourer (agri), 6=Day labourer (non-agri), 7=Regular job holder (govt.), 8=Regular job holder
(non-govt.), 9=Unemployed, 10=Irregular service-holder (govt./non-govt.), 11=Political Leader,
12=Employed to NGO, 13=School teacher, 14=Journalist, 15=College/University teacher,
16=Advocate/Lawyer/Barrister, 17=Doctor (at least MBBS), 18=Local govt. representative (current or
former), 19=Madrassa teacher, 20=Retired person, 21=Rickshaw/van puller/Bus driver/Truck driver,
22=Industrial worker, Others (Specify)....

Di`vZvi ckv mwKZ KvW: 1=Qv, 2=Mwnbx, 3=^wbqvwRZ KvR (Kwl), 4=^wbqvwRZ KvR (Kwl KvR
Qvov), 5=w`bgRyi (Kwl), 6=w`bRgyi (Kwl eZxZ), 7=wbqwgZ PvKzixRxex (miKvwi), 8=wbqwgZ PvKzwiRxex
(emiKvwi), 9=eKvi, 10=AwbqwgZ PvKzwiRxex (miKvwi, emiKvwi), 11=ivRbwZK bZv, 12=GbwRIZ
PvKzwiiZ, 13=zj wkK, 14=mvsevw`K, 15=KjR/wekwe`vjq wkK, 16=AvBbRxex (GWfvKU/evwivi)
17=wPwKrmK (GgweweGm cvk), 18=cvb/eZgvb vbxq miKvi cwZwbwa, 19=gv`vmv wkK, 20=Aemicv,
21=wiKmvPvjK/ fvbPvjK/ evm I UvK WvBfvi, 22=wk kwgK, Abvb (DjL Kiyb) ......
Sectors code: 1=Family, 2=Private, 3=Government, 4=NGO, 5= Self-employed, 6=Others
1= cwievi, 2=emiKvwi
Migration codes: 1=Dhaka, 2= Elsewhere in Bangladesh, 3= South Asia, 4= Malaysia, 5= Arab
countries, 6=Western countries
1= XvKv, 2= evsjv`k Ab Kv_vI, 3= `wY Gwkqv, 4= gvjqwkqv, 5= gacvP, 6= cvvZ `kmg~n
* Coding Categories

QB5 Which skills do you have of the following?
GLb AvcbvK wKQy `Zvi K_v ejev, Avcwb wK `qv Ki ejeb, wbv welqjvZ Avcbvi Kgb `Zv AvQ?

No. HS SS LS TUS DNK

Ly` gv` we`b GA` Rvbv
B5.1 English language BsiRx fvlv vb 1 2 3 4 9
B5.2 Computer (writing &
calculating)
KwDUvi vb (jLv I wnmve Kiv) 1 2 3 4 9
B5.3 Internet BUvibU eenvi 1 2 3 4 9

Skill level: highly skilled (HS), somewhat skilled (SS), limited skills (LS), totally unskilled (TUS)
Lye ` (Ly`), gvUvgywU ` (gv`), weklfve ` bq (we`b), GKevi A` (GA`), Rvwb bv (Rvbv)

QB6 Leisure activities. Would you please tell me to what extent they are important to you?
Avwg GLb AvcbvK wKQy KvRi K_v ejev, Avcwb `qv Ki ejeb wK KvRjv Avcbvi KvQ KZUv iyZc~Y ?

No. HI SI SUI HI DNK Rank
(1-3)

Ae wK Zb

Gb ecvbv gvbymvi
ejyb (1-3)
01 Reading books
(novels etc.)
eB cov (cvV eB
Qvov Abvb eB)
1 2 3 4 9
02 Reading newspapers Leii KvMR cov 1 2 3 4 9
03 Watching TV wUwf `Lv 1 2 3 4 9
04 Religious activities agxq KvR Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
05 Spending time with
family
cwievii mv_ mgq
KvUvbv
1 2 3 4 9
06 Spending time with
friends
ez`i mv_ mgq
KvUvbv
1 2 3 4 9
07 Indor games Ni em Ljv-ay jv
Kiv
1 2 3 4 9
08 Outdor games evBi Ljv-ay jv Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
09 Shopping KbvKvUv Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
10 Traveling gY Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
11 Listening to music Mvb kvbv 1 2 3 4 9
12 Use personal
computer
KwDUvi KvR Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
13 Using internet BUvibU eenvi Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
14 Digital networks
(eg:facebook, twitter)
mvgvwRK hvMvhvMi
mvBU (dmeyK,
UzBUvi)
1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq (Gb), ejZ
cvwibv (ecvbv)
QB7 Importance of top 3 activities (from QB6) and time and money spent
G DjwLZ KvRjvi gvS mevP iyZ cv 3wU KvRi mK ejyb|

No. Rank

A. Ranking (1-3)
[Code of B6]
B. Hours per week (current) C. Current costs (per
month)

g mevP iyZ cv 3wU KvR eZgvb eenvi (NUv/mvn) LiP (UvKv/gvm)
B7.1 1
B7.2 2
B7.3 3
Code: 77=those who ranked but not using, 99=currently using but spends nothing
77=hviv QB6 gvbymvi ejQ wK eenvi Kibv, 99 =eZgvb eenvi Kib wK Kvb eq nqbv

Annex 117
118 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
QB8 Now tell me about your access to (digital) media
Avwg GLb AvcbvK wKQy gvagi K_v ejev, Avcwb `qv Ki ejeb wbv gvagjvi mv_ Avcbvi mZv

Kgb?


No. Digital media A.
Since
Ke
_K
B. Where (see
code)
Kv_vq (KvW
`L wjLyb)
C. Current
utilisation
(hrs/week)
eZgvb eenvi
(NUv/ mvn)
D. Costs
(Taka/
month)
LiP
(UvKv/gvm)
B 8.1 TV wUwf

B 8.2 Telephones Uwjdvb

B 8.3 Mobile phone gvevBj dvb

Talk time
K_v ejvi mgq

B 8.4 Computer/
Internet/
Facebook/other
networks
KwDUvi/ BUvibU/
dmeyK/ Abvb
mvgvwRK hvMvhvMi
mvBU

Where (code): 1=at home, 2=at friends, 3=at school, 4=at public, 5=at club, 6=commercial, 7=other,

Kv_vq (KvW): 1=wbRi evwoZ, 2=ez`i/ cwZekxi evwoZ, 3=zj, 4=Mvg/ nvU/ Rbmg, 5=hye
msN, 6= KvK/evwYwRK vb, 7=Awdm, 8=Abvb, 9= Rvwbbv

8=ofce, 9=dont know
QB9 Please tell me about your current standard of living (socio-economic status) and expectations for
the future
Avcbvi eZgvb Rxebhvv, Av_-mvgvwRK Aev mK ejyb Ges fwelZ wK cZvkv Kib?

No. Questions VH MH BA VL DNK

Ly fv gvfv Zfvb LyLv Rvbv/
c b
B 9.1 Standard of living of
parents
evev-gvqi Rxebhvvi gvb 1 2 3 4 9
B 9.2 Current standard of
living (If separated)
eZgvb Rxebhvvi gvb (hw`
Di`vZvi Avjv`v Lvbv nq)
1 2 3 4 9
B 9.3 Past standard of
living (two years ago)
c~ei Rxebhvvi gvb (2 ermi
AvM)
1 2 3 4 9
B 9.4 Expected standard of
living within 2 years
fwelZi AvKvwLZ Rxebhvvi
gvb (2 eQii ga)
1 2 3 4 9
B 9.5 Expected standard of
living within 5 years
fwelZi AvKvwLZ Rxebhvvi
gvb (5 eQii ga)
1 2 3 4 9

Coding for Standard of Living: very high (VH), moderately high (MH), below average (BA), very low VL)
Lye fvjv (Lyfv), gvUvgywU fvjv (gvfv), Zgb fvjv bq (Zfvb), Lye Lvivc (LyLv), Rvwb bv/ chvR bq (Rvbv /cb)

QB10 How do you see your own situation as compared to other young people (15-30 years)?
Avcbvi gZ Abvb ZiyY`i (15-30 eQi) mv_ Zzjbv Ki Avcbvi Aevb mK ejyb|

No. VH MH BA VL DNK

Lyfv gvfv Zfvb Lvivc Rvbv/
cb
B 10.1 Other youths (15-30
years)
Abvb ZiyY`i Zzjbvq
(15-30 eQi)
1 2 3 4 9
B 10.2 Youths of urban poor knii `wi` ZiyY`i
Zzjbvq
1 2 3 4 9
B 10.3 Youths of rural poor Mvgi `wi` ZiyY`i
Zzjbvq
1 2 3 4 9
B 10.4 Youths of ethnic
minorities
Avw`evmx ZiyY`i Zzjbvq 1 2 3 4 9
B 10.5 Youths of religious
minorities
Ab agi ZiyY`i Zzjbvq 1 2 3 4 9

Coding: very high (VH), moderately high (MH), below average (BA), very low (VL),
Lye fvjv (Lyfv), gvUvgywU fvjv (gvfv), Zgb fvjv bq (Zfvb), Lvivc, Rvwb bv/ chvR bq (Rvbv / cb)

QB11 What is your life cycle planning? [READ OUT to all]
AvcbvK wKQy welq co kvbve, Avcwb KZ eQi KvRjv KiZ Pvb? (mevBK co kvbvb)

No. Age (in complete years)
KZ eQi eqm KvRwU kl KiZ Pvb?
A.Ideal age (in your
opinion)
B. (If experienced) Age
of experience*

Avcbvi `wZ
Dchy eqm (c~Y
eQi)
hw` AwfZv _vK, KZ
eQi eqm KiQb?
B11.1 Complete education jLvcov kl Kiv

B11.2 Start working KvR iy Kiv

B11.3 Getting married weq Kiv

B11.4 Having children mZvb bIqv

B11.5 Social/Community
involvement
mvgvwRK/ GjvKvi
KgKv AskMnY

B11.6 Retire Aemi

B11.7 Undertake religious
pilgrimage
nR hvevi Rb/ agxq
Zx_vb gY

*use - for others/AwfZv bv _vKj eenvi Kiyb
Annex 119
120 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011

SECTION C: Youth and the state

QC1 Where do you see the 3 major challenges for young people of Bangladesh?
Avcbvi `wZ evsjv`ki ZiyY`i cavb 3wU cwZeKZv/mgmv wK wK?

No. Challenges cwZeKZvmg~n
1
2
3

QC2 Where do you see the major challenges for young people? [READ OUT]
Avcbvi `wZ evsjv`ki ZiyY`i cavb cavb cwZeKZvjv wK wK? (co kvbvb)

Challenges cwZeKZv Rank (1-3)
iyZi gvbymvi ejyb (1-3)
C2.1 Maintaining good health my^v iv Kiv

C2.2 Securing food security Lv` wbivcv wbwZ Kiv

C2.3 Finding employment fvjv wkv cvIqv

C2.4 Coping with natural disasters Kgmsvb Kiv

C2.5 Getting a good education Kgeagvb eq Gi mv_ gvwbq
Pjv


QC3 What is your overall assessment of the performance of the current and past governments?
Avcbvi weePbvZ eZgvb I weMZ miKvijvi KvRi g~jvqb Kiyb

No. VS SS SD VD DKN
Lym wKm wKAm LyAm Rvbv
C3.1 Current government
(2009)
eZgvb miKvi (2009-till now)

1 2 3 4 9
C3.2 Past CTG (2007-08) weMZ ZveavqK miKvi
(2007-08)
1 2 3 4 9
C3.3 Past government
(before CTG) (2001-06)
weMZ miKvi (ZveavqK
miKvii c~e) (2001-06)
1 2 3 4 9

Rating: very satisfed (VS), somewhat satisfed (SS), somewhat dissatisfed (SD), very dissatisfed (VD),

do

LyeB mZvlRbK (Lym), wKQ~Uv mZvlRbK (wKm), wKQyUv AmZvlRbK (wKAm), LyeB AmZvlRbK (LyAm),
Rvwb bv

(Rvbv)
not know (DKN)

No. Questions CC* Code Skip
Q C4A Are you a voter?

Avcwb wK fvUvi? Yes/ nuv
1
Q C4B
No/ bv
2
Q C5
Q C4B How often have you participated in elections?/ Avcwb wK AvM Kvb wbevPb fvU w`qQb?
No. Code
Frequency/KZevi NA/c b
C4B.1 National election RvZxq wbevPb
_____Times/ evi 9
C4B.2 Local Govt. election vbxq miKvi wbevPb
_____Times/ evi 9
C4B.3 Have you always voted for the
same party?
Avcwb wK memgq GKB `j
fvU `b?
Yes/nuv 1
9
No/bv 2
*Coding Categories** Not available (NA) chvR bq (cb)

QC5 Are you a member of these groups/parties?/ Avcwb wbv `jjvi mv_ hy AvQb wK?

No. Questions Code if Yes:for how
many years
hw` nuv nq KZ
eQi ai
Yes
nuv
No
bv

C5.1 Are you a member of any
political party?
Avcwb wK Kvb ivRbwZK
`ji m`m?
1 2
C5.2 Are you a member of any
formal youth group?
Avcwb wK Kvb cvwZvwbK
hye msMVbi m`m?
1 2
C5.3 Are you a member of any other
community/cultural group?
Avcwb wK Kvb
mvgvwRK/mvswZK `ji
m`m?
1 2

QC6 Which of these groups has been most strongly neglected over the past 5 years?
Avcbvi gZ wbv Mycjvi ga Kviv weMZ 5 eQi ai ewk AenwjZ?
Rating: highly agree (HA), somewhat agree (SA), somewhat disagree (SD), highly disagree (HD),

do not

cyivcywi GKgZ (cyG), wKQzUv GKgZ (wKG), wKQzUv wgZ (wKw), cyivcywi wgZ (cyw), Rvwb bv

know (DKN)
No. HA SA SD HD DKN

cyG wKG wKw cyw Rvbv
C6.1 Young children QvU wk 1 2 3 4 9
C6.2 Urban youth community hye m`vq
1 2 3 4 9
C6.3 Poor People `wi` gvbyl 1 2 3 4 9
C6.4 Elderly people e gvbyl 1 2 3 4 9
C6.5 Women bvix 1 2 3 4 9
C6.6 Ethnic minorities Avw`evmx 1 2 3 4 9
C6.7 Religious minorities agxq msLvjNy 1 2 3 4 9
C6.8 Physically/mentally
challenged persons
kvixwiK/gvbwmK cwZex
gvbyl
1 2 3 4 9

Annex 121
122 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
QC7 What is your overall assessment of the performance of these institutions?
Avcbvi weePbvq wbv cwZvbjvi KvRi g~jvqb Ki ejyb|

No. HS SS SD HD DKN Experience
in past 3 years
Yes No

Ly m wKm wKAm LyAm Rvbv AwfZv (MZ 3
eQi)
nuv bv
C7.1 MPs (in general) Ggwc 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C7.2 Election commission wbevPb Kwgkb 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C7.3 Anti-Corruption
Commission
`ybxwZ `gb
Kwgkb
1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C7.4 Members of the
judiciary
wePvi wefvMi
m`miv
1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C7.5 Members of local
arbitration committee
mvwjki m`miv 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C 7.6 Police cywjk 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C7.7 Military mbvevwnbx 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C7.8 Any local govt.
representatives
vbxq miKvi
cwZwbwa
1 2 3 4 9 1 2

Rating: highly satisfed (HS), somewhat satisfed (SS), somewhat dissatisfed (SD), highly dissatisfed

(HD),

LyeB mZlRbK (Lym), wKQzUv mZvlRbK (wKm), wKQzUv AmZvlRbK (wKAm), LyeB AmZvlRbK (LyAm),

No. Questions and Filters CC* Code Skip
C8.A Do you think that young people
should involve in politics?
Avcwb wK gb Kib hyeK`i
ivRbxwZZ m nIqv DwPZ?
Yes/nuv 1
No/bv 2
C8.1 Do you think that students should
involve in politics?
Qv`i wK ivRbxwZZ m
nIqv DwPZ?
Yes/nuv 1 C8.2
No/bv 2 C9
If Yes in C8.1: to what extent should students be involved in party politics?
hw` C8.1 Di nuv nq, Zvnj Qv`i wK cwigvY ivRbxwZZ m nIqv DwPZ?


LE SE SLE VLE

ewk Ki wKQzUv Kg Ki Lye Kg
C8.2 Participate in election
campaigns
wbevPbx cPviYvZ
AskMnY Kiv
1 2 3 4
C8.3 Support leaders bZv`i mg_b `qv 1 2 3 4
C8.4 Participate in rallies wgwQj AskMnY Kiv 1 2 3 4
C8.5 Participating in hartals niZvj AskMnY Kiv 1 2 3 4
C8.6 By voting fvU`vbi gvag
1 2 3 4
C8.7 Become candidates cv_x nq 1 2 3 4

To a large extent (LE), To some extent (SE), To some limited extent (SLE), Very limited extent (VLE)
*Coding categories
do not know (DKN)
Rvwb bv (Rvbv)
QC9 According to your opinion what should be the basis of voting? [READ OUT]
Avcbvi gZ wbevPb fvU `vb wKfve nIqv DwPZ Ges Zv Avcwb wKfve mg_b Kib? (co kvbvb)
Rating: highly agree (HA), somewhat agree (SA), somewhat disagree (SD), highly disagree (HD), do not
know (DKN)
cyivcywi GKgZ (cyG) wKQzUv GKgZ (wKG) wKQzUv wgZ (wKw), cyivcywi wgZ (cyw), Rvwb bv (Rvbv)

No. HA SA SD HD DKN Ranking
(1-3)

cyG wKG

wKw cyw Rvbv gvbymvi
ejyb (1-3)

C9.1 Party afliation ivRbwZK `jK `L 1 2 3 4 9
C9.2 Political leaders ivRbwZK bZv`i `L 1 2 3 4 9
C9.3 Suggestions made by
family members
evev/ AwffveKiv/cwievii
m`miv hvK w`Z ej
1 2 3 4 9
C9.4 Suggestions made by
friends
eziv hvK w`Z ej 1 2 3 4 9
C9.5 Personal contacts ewMZ hvMvhvMi hvi
mv_ AvQ
1 2 3 4 9
C9.6 Whether the party con-
siders the interests of
youth
h `j hye mc`vqi Rb
KvR Ki
1 2 3 4 9
C9.7 Whether the party has
good political manifesto
h `ji fvjv ivRbwZK
gwbdv/BkZnvi _vK
1 2 3 4 9
C9.8 Whether party considers
local issues
hw` `jwU vbxq
mgmvjvK weePbv Ki
1 2 3 4 9
C9.9 Whether a party is likely
to win the election
wbevPb h `j wRZe ej
gb nq
1 2 3 4 9

QC10 How do you defne fair elections?/ Avcwb wKfve myy wbevPbK evLv Kieb?

No. HA SA SD HD DKN

cy G wKG wKw cyw Rvbv
C10.1 Strong election commission kwkvjx wbevPb Kwgkb
1 2 3 4 9
C10.2 Carried out by ruling party miKvwi `ji gvag wbevPb
1 2 3 4 9
C10.3 Only persons with no
sentence of criminal record
can be candidates
hviv mvRvcv Zviv wbevPb
cv_x nZ cvie bv
1 2 3 4 9
C10.4 Mandatory disclosure of
budget for campaigns
cv_xi wbevPbx LiPi wnmve
cKvk Kiv
1 2 3 4 9
C10.5 Parties respect each other
during election campaigns
wbevPbx cPviYvZ cv_x`i
GK Abi cwZ mvb
c`kb
1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly agree (HA), somewhat agree (SA), somewhat disagree (SD), highly disagree (HD),do not
know (DKN)
cyivcywi GKgZ (cyG), wKQzUv GKgZ (wKG), wKQzUv wgZ (wKw), cyivcywi wgZ (cyw), Rvwbbv (Rvbv)
Annex 123
124 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011

QC11 What can the government do to improve the lives of young people?
Avwg GLb AvcbvK wKQy K_v ejev, Avcwb ejeb ZiyY`i Dbqbi Rb miKvii wK Kiv DwPZ?
Rating: highly agree (HA), somewhat agree (SA), somewhat disagree (SD), highly disagree (HD),do
not know (DKN)
cyivcywi GKgZ (cyG), wKQzUv GKgZ (wKG), wKQzUv wgZ (wKw), cyivcywi wgZ (cyw), Rvwb bv (Rvbv)
No. HA SA SD HD DK
N
Ranking
(1-3)

cyG wKG wKw cyw Rvbv gvbymvi
ejyb (1-3)
C11.1 Improve quality
of education
wkvi gvbi Dbqb Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
C11.2 Generate more
job opportunities
AviI PvKywii myhvM Zwi Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
C11.3 Efcient
Administration
KvhKix ckvmb 1 2 3 4 9
C11.4 Invest more in the
IT sector
Z_ chywZ AviI ewk
wewbqvM Kiv
1 2 3 4 9
C11.5 Provide social
security
mvgvwRK wbivcv c`vb
(eKvi fvZv, cwkY BZvw`)
1 2 3 4 9
C11.6 Prevent crimes Aciva cwZiva/`gb Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
C11.7 Corruption free
business
environment
`~bxwZgy eemvwqK cwiek 1 2 3 4 9
C11.8 Gender friendly
policy
bvix cyiyli mgghv`v mb
bxwZ
1 2 3 4 9

QC12 How could the government improve education?
miKvi wKfve wkveevi Dbqb NUvZ cvi?

No. HA SA SD HD DKN Ranking
(1-3)

cyG wKG wKw cyw Rvbv gvbymvi
ejyb (1-3)
C12.1 More teachers AwaK wkK wbqvM Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
C12.2 Better training for
teachers
wkK`i Rb cwkYi
eev Kiv
1 2 3 4 9
C12.3 Better books cvV eBqi gvb DbZ Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
C12.4 Better tuition classes
for low-performing
students
Lvivc gvbi Qv-Qvx`i
Rb wekl Kvm
1 2 3 4 9
C12.5 Less exams Kg cixv MnYi gvag 1 2 3 4 9
C12.6 Regular school meals zj wbqwgZ Lvevii
eev Kiv
1 2 3 4 9
C12.7 Revised curriculum cvVgi cwieZb Ki 1 2 3 4 9
C12.8 More schools AviI zj cwZvi gvag 1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly agree (HA), somewhat agree (SA), somewhat disagree (SD), highly disagree (HD),do not
know (DKN)
cyivcywi GKgZ (cyG), wKQzUv GKgZ (wKG), wKQzUv wgZ (wKw), cyivcywi wgZ (cyw), Rvwbbv (Rvbv)

QC13 Overall, how important is vocational/technical (VET) training (& skill development)?
KvwiMix cwkY welq wbv welqjvZ Avcbvi gZvgZ w`b ?

No. HA SA SD HD DKN

cyG wKG wKw cyw Rvbv
C13.1 VTE is only important for
less-educated people
KvwiMwi cwkY Kg wkwZ
gvbyli Rb cqvRbxq
1 2 3 4 5
C13.2 VTE should be
mandatory for all
KvwiMix cwkY mevi Rb
evaZvg~jK nIqv DwPZ
1 2 3 4 5
C13.3 VTE is important only for
the agricultural labour
force
KvwiMix cwkY aygv
Pvlvev` wbqvwRZ ew`i
Rb cqvRb
1 2 3 4 5
C13.4 VTE is important only for
the urban labour force
KvwiMix cwkY aygv
knii kgRxex gvbyl`i Rb
cqvRb
1 2 3 4 5
C13.5 VTE is important only for
the labour force who
plan to migrate (Gulf or
elsewhere)
KvwiMwi cwkY aygv
we`k hvevi Rb Kgx`i
cqvRb
1 2 3 4 5

Rating: highly agree (HA), somewhat agree (SA), somewhat disagree (SD), highly disagree (HD), do not

cyivcywi GKgZ (cyG), wKQzUv GKgZ (wKG), wKQzUv wgZ (wKw), cyivcywi wgZ (cyw), Rvwbbv (Rvbv)

know (DKN)
QC14 How can the government improve vocational and technical training?
Avcbvi gZ miKvi wKfve KvwiMwi /ewg~jK cwkYK DbZ KiZ cvi?
Rating: highly agree (HA), somewhat agree (SA), somewhat disagree (SD), highly disagree (HD), do not

cyivcywi GKgZ (cyG), wKQzUv GKgZ (wKG), wKQzUv wgZ (wKw), cyivcywi wgZ (cyw), Rvwbbv (Rvbv)
know (DKN)
No. HA SA SD HD DKN

cyG wKG wKw cyw Rvbv
C14.1 More hours for vocational and
technical training
wkvcwZvb KvwiMwi
cwkYi mgq ew Kiv
1 2 3 4 9
C14.2 Start vocational and technical
training in earlier classes
QvU Kvm _vKZ KvwiMwi
cwkY i Kiv
1 2 3 4 9
C14.3 More teachers KvwiMwi welq AviI wkK
wbqvMi gvag
1 2 3 4 9
C14.4 More practical lessons ewk eenvwiK wkvi
AvqvRb Ki
1 2 3 4 9
C14.5 Need to revise curriculum cvVgi cwieZb NwUq 1 2 3 4 9
C14.6 More lessons as placements in
private companies
wewfb KvvwbZ KvRi
myhvM w`q
1 2 3 4 9


Rating: highly agree (HA), somewhat agree (SA), somewhat disagree (SD), highly disagree (HD),do not
know (DKN)
cyivcywi GKgZ (cyG), wKQzUv GKgZ (wKG), wKQzUv wgZ (wKw), cyivcywi wgZ (cyw), Rvwbbv (Rvbv)

Annex 125
126 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011

QC15 Please assess corruption level for the following institutions.
Avcbvi gZ wbv cwZvbjv KZUzKz `ybxwZM ?

No. HC

SC NSC NC DNK Experience of
facing corruption in
past 12 months
Yes No
Ly`y wK`y Z`yb G`yb Rvbv GB cwZvbMyjvZ
Avcbvi `ybxwZi
AwfZv (MZ 12 gvm)

nuv bv
C15.1 Private
Organization/
Business
Organisation
emiKvwi cwZvb /
eemv cwZvb
1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C15.2 NGOs GbwRI 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C15.3 Hospitals and
Health force
nvmcvZvj I ^v
K`
1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C15.4 Power sector we`yr LvZ 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C15.5 Courts KvU 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C15.6 Local government vbxq miKvi 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C15.7 Police cywjk 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C15.8 Education wkv 1 2 3 4 9 1 2
C15.9 Tax AvqKi wefvM 1 2 3 4 9 1 2

Rating: HC-Highly corrupted, SC- Somewhat corrupted, NSC-Not so corrupted, NC-Not at all corrupted
Lye `ybxwZM (Ly`y), wKQyUv `ybxwZM (wK`y), Zgb `ybxwZM bq (Z`yb), GK`g `ybxwZM bq (G`yb), Rvwb bv (Rvbv )
QC16 Justice should be handled by:
Kvi gvag wePvi cwiPvjbv Kiv DwPZ ej Avcwb gb Kib?

No. HA SA SD HD DNK

cyG wKG wKw cyw Rvbv
C16.1 By executive body of Govt. ckvmbi gvag 1 2 3 4 9
C16.2 Judiciary (Court) wePvi wefvMi gvag (KvU) 1 2 3 4 9
C16.3 Religious leaders (Imam etc.) agxq bZv`i gvag (Bgvg) 1 2 3 4 9
C16.4 Shalish mvwjki gvag 1 2 3 4 9
C16.5 Political leaders ivRbwZK bZv`i gvag 1 2 3 4 9
C16.6 By family members cwievii gvag 1 2 3 4 9
C16.7 On the spot Aciva msNwUZ vb 1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly agree (HA), somewhat agree (SA), somewhat disagree (SD), highly disagree (HD), do not

cyivcywi GKgZ (cyG), wKQzUv GKgZ (wKG), wKQzUv wgZ (wKw), cyivcywi wgZ (cyw), Rvwbbv (Rvbv)

know (DKN)
nevi
QC17 What are the most prominent Law & Order problems?
Avcbvi gZ, eZgvb AvBb kLjv cwiwwZi AebwZi Kvb mgmvwU ewk iyZc~Y?

No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
C17.1 Personal property crimes
(theft, burglary, robbery,
mugging)
ewMZ m` msvZ
Aciva (Pzwi, WvKvwZ,
wQbZvB)
1 2 3 4 9
C17.2 Eve teasing Bf wUwRs 1 2 3 4 9
C17.3 Rape alY 1 2 3 4 9
C17.4 Dowry hZzK 1 2 3 4 9
C17.5 Politically infuenced
violence
ivRbwZKfve cfvweZ
Aciva
1 2 3 4 9
C17.6 Religious violence agxq wbhvZb 1 2 3 4 9
C17.7 Ethnic violence RvwZMZ wel/ wbhvZb 1 2 3 4 9
C17.8 Domestic violence cvwievwiK wbhvZb 1 2 3 4 9
C17.9 Violence using frearms AvMqvi eenvi Ki
wbhvZb
1 2 3 4 9
C17.10 Land grabbing and related
disputes
Rwg `Lj msvZ 1 2 3 4 9
C17.11 Drug abuse/use gv`K eemv 1 2 3 4 9
C17.12 Alcohol abuse g` LvIqv 1 2 3 4 9
C17.13 Murder Lyb 1 2 3 4 9
C17.14 Police/harassment cywjkx wbhvZb 1 2 3 4 9
C17.15 Women and children
trafcking
bvix I wk cvPvi 1 2 3 4 9
C17.16 Kidnapping and ransom AcniY I gywcY 1 2 3 4 9
C17.17 Extortion gwK 1 2 3 4 9
C17.18 Acid throwing GwmW wbc 1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq(Gb), Rvwb bv
(Rvbv)
Annex 127
128 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011

QC18 Who should be responsible for reducing crime?
Aciva `gb Kivi Rb Kvi f~wgKv Avcbvi KvQ iyZc~Y ej gb nq?

No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
C18.1 Members of the public msm` m`m 1 2 3 4 9
C18.2 Media: TV/newspaper etc. MYgvag: Uwjwfkb/
msev`c

1 2 3 4 9
C18.3 Parents/family members of
perpetrator
Acivaxi cwievi/evev gv 1 2 3 4 9
C18.4 Private security companies emiKvix wbivcv
Kvvbx
1 2 3 4 9
C18.5 Local education
authorities/ teachers
vbxq wkv cwZvb/
wkK
1 2 3 4 9
C18.6 Local authorities/union
councils
BDwbqb cwil`/vbxq
cwZvb
1 2 3 4 9
C18.7 Police cywjk 1 2 3 4 9
C18.8 Courts KvU 1 2 3 4 9
C18.9 RAB ive 1 2 3 4 9
C18.10 Ansar/VDP Avbmvi wfwWwc 1 2 3 4 9
C18.11 Local politicians vbxq bZv 1 2 3 4 9
C18.12 Mobile courts gvevBj KvU 1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly
unimportant (HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq(Gb), Rvwb bv
(Rvbv)
QC19 To you, what does democracy mean? [READ OUT]
Avcbvi KvQ MYZi A_ wK?

No. = GBS 2010 Rank (1-3)
gvbymvi
ejyb (1-3)
QC19.1 Election every fve years cwZ 5 eQi ci ci wbevPb

QC19.2 Rule By consent HKgZi kvmb

QC19.3 Free public debate RbMYi ga Dby weZK

QC19.4 Ability to participate in decision making wmvZ MnY cwqvZ AskMnY
Kivi myhvM

QC19.5 Ability to access information on how
govt. works
miKvi wKfve KvR Ki m Z_
Rvbvi myhvM


SECTION D: Youth and the Family

QD1 How important is family to you?
Avcbvi cwievi Avcbvi KvQ KZUv iyZc~Y?

HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
Code 1 2 3 4 9

QD2 Who are your most important relations within your parental family and how?
Avcbvi cwievi Kvi mv_ Avcbvi mK mePq ewk iyZc~Y?

No. HI SI SUI HUI DKN NA

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv bB /
cb
D2.1 Father evev 1 2 3 4 9 7
D2.2 Mother gv 1 2 3 4 9 7
D2.3 Elder sister/brother eo fvB/evb 1 2 3 4 9 7
D2.4 Younger sister/brother QvU fvB/evb 1 2 3 4 9 7
D2.5 Mothers family gvqi cwievi 1 2 3 4 9 7
D2.6 Fathers family evevi cwievi 1 2 3 4 9 7

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly
unimportant (HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq (Gb), Rvwb
bv (Rvbv), bB/ chvR bq (cb)
Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq (Gb), Rvwb
bv, (Rvbv), bB / chvR bq (cb)
QD3 Role of parents/guardian
AvcbvK wKQy welqi K_v ejev, wbv welqjvZ Avcbvi evev-gvi /AwffveKi f~wgKv wK iKg ?


No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN
Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
D3.1 Selecting spouse ^vgx x wbevPbi 1 2 3 4 9
D3.2 Providing fnancial means UvKv cqmv `evi 1 2 3 4 9
D3.3 Provide education wkvi eev Kivi 1 2 3 4 9
D3.4 Encourage discipline wbqg kLjv gb PjZ
Dy Kivi
1 2 3 4 9
D3.5 Provide guidance wb`kbv `evi 1 2 3 4 9
D3.6 Be a good guardian fvjv AwffveK wnme 1 2 3 4 9
Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq (Gb), Rvwb bv
(Rvbv)
Annex 129
130 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
QD5 Selection criteria for spouse [Ask to all]
mx (^vgx/x) wbevPbi Kvb welqjv Avcbvi KvQ iyZc~Y? [weevwnZ/AweevwnZ mKjK]

No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
D5.1 Pleasant character fvjv Pwi 1 2 3 4 9
D5.2 from a good family fvjv cwievi 1 2 3 4 9
D5.3 Higher social status DP mvgvwRK ghv`v 1 2 3 4 9
D5.4 Good education wkwZ 1 2 3 4 9
D5.5 Good looking fvjv Pnviv 1 2 3 4 9
D5.6 Good relation cwievii mv_ fvjv mK 1 2 3 4 9
D5.7 Interest in working KvR KiZ AvMnx 1 2 3 4 9
D5.8 Holding a good job fvjv PvKwi AvQ 1 2 3 4 9
D5.9 Interest in having
children
mZvb wbZ AvMnx
1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq (Gb), Rvwb
bv (Rvbv)

QD4 What is the level of freedom of choice that you can exercise regarding the following aspects?
Avcbvi wbPi KvRjv Kivi Avcwb KZUv ^vaxb?

Rating: very independent (VI), mostly independent (MI), somewhat independent (SI), not independent
(NI), do not know (DKN)
cyivcywi ^vaxb (cy^v), ek ^vaxb (e^v), wKQzUv ^vaxb (wK^v), GKevi ^vaxb bq (G^vb),Rvwb bv (Rvbv)

No. VI MI SI NI DNK

cy^v e^v wK^v G^vb Rvbv
D4.1 Chose school wkv cwZvb wbevPbi 1 2 3 4 9
D4.2 Chose friends ez wbevPbi 1 2 3 4 9
D4.3 Mobility Kv_vI hvevi 1 2 3 4 9
D4.4 Buying clothes Kvco Kbvi 1 2 3 4 9
D4.5 How to spend money UvKv LiPi 1 2 3 4 9
D4.6 Chose future spouse fwelZ ^vgx x wbevPbi 1 2 3 4 9
D4.7 Future employment fwelZ Kvb ckvZ hveb Zv
wbevPbi
1 2 3 4 9

SECTION E: Youth and the Community

QE1 Importance of community/ Avcbvi KvQ mgvR KZUv iyZc~Y?

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq (Gb), Rvwb bv
(Rvbv)
No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
E1.1 To safeguard the interests
of the individuals
cZK m`mi ^v_ iv Ki 1 2 3 4 9
E1.2 To support all members in
times of need
cqvRbi mgq me m`mK
mvnvh Ki
1 2 3 4 9
E1.3 To solve conficts weiva gxgvsmv Ki 1 2 3 4 9
E1.4 To encourage religious
behaviour
agxq AvPiYK DrmvwnZ Ki 1 2 3 4 9
E1.5 To support the activities
of the state
ivi KvR mnvqZv Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
E1.6 Provide a sense of
security or safety
wbivcvi Avkvm `Iqv 1 2 3 4 9
E1.7 Preserve traditions and
values
mvgvwRK ixwZ I g~jeva
msiY Kiv
1 2 3 4 9

QE2 Whom do you approach in times of your need within the community?
AvcbvK KqKRbi K_v ejev, Avcwb ejeb Avcbvi h Kvb cqvRbi mgq mgvR Kvi f~wgKv iyZ
Abymvi KZUzKz?

No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN



Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv gvbymvi
ejyb
(1-3)
E2.1 Family cwievi 1 2 3 4 9
E2.2 Other relatives Abvb AvZxq 1 2 3 4 9
E2.3 Teachers wkK 1 2 3 4 9
E2.4 Religious leaders Bgvg/agxq bZv 1 2 3 4 9
E2.5 Friends ez 1 2 3 4 9
E2.6 Community leaders mgvRi bZv 1 2 3 4 9
E2.7 Political leaders ivRbwZK bZv 1 2 3 4 9
E2.8 Members of youth
group
hye msNi mv_
1 2 3 4 9

Rank (1-3)
Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq(Gb), Rvwb bv
(Rvbv)
Annex 131
132 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011

No. Question Coding categories Code
E3 What is your
religion?


Avcwb Kvb agi
Abymvix?
Islam Bmjvg 1
Hinduism wn`y 2
Buddhism e 3
Christianity Lvb 4
Others (specify) Abvb (DjL
Kiyb)

QE3A [Ask only to Muslims] Importance of religion
[kyay gymjgvb`i wRvmv Kiyb] Avcbvi KvQ GB agxq KvRjv KZUv iyZc~Y?

No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
E3A.1 Praying bvgvR cov 1 2 3 4 9
E3A.2 Reading Koran KviAvb cvV Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
E3A.3 Public jamat ZvejxM RvgvZ 1 2 3 4 9
E3A.4 Fasting during Ramadan igRvb ivhv ivLv 1 2 3 4 9
E3A.5 Undertaking haj nR Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
E3A.6 Giving zakat hvKvZ `Iqv 1 2 3 4 9
E3A.7 Wearing hijab eviLv civ 1 2 3 4 9
E3A.8 Tolerance towards other
religions
Abvb agi gvbyli
mv_ fvjv mK ivLv
1 2 3 4 9
E3A.9 Tolerance towards
womens rights
gwnjv`i AwaKvi
mK mnbkxj nIqv
1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimpor-
tant (HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq(Gb), Rvwb
bv (Rvbv)
QE3B [Ask only to Non-Muslims] Importance of religion
[ay hviv Agymwjg Zv`i wRvmv Kiyb] Avcbvi KvQ agi f~wgKv KZUv iyZc~Y?

No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
E3B.1 Praying cv_bv Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
E3B.2 Reading of religious texts agxq eB cov 1 2 3 4 9
E3B.3 Weekly congregations mvvwnK cv_bv 1 2 3 4 9
E3B.4 Annual festivals evwlK Drme 1 2 3 4 9
E3B.5 Other rituals Abvb agxq Abyvb/
(c~Rv/eow`b)
1 2 3 4 9
E3B.6 Tolerance towards other
religions
Abvb agi cwZ
mnbkxjZv
1 2 3 4 9
E3B.7 Tolerance towards
womens rights
bvixi AwaKvii cwZ
mnbkxjZv
1 2 3 4 9
No. Question Skip
E3B.8 [Ask to all] Among 10 good friends how many friends (ever) of
other religion do you have?
Number........ E4

[mKjK wRvmv Kiyb] Avcbvi fvjv 10 Rb ezi gvS KZ Rb Ab
agi iqQ (h Kvbv mgqi)?
.............. Rb

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq(Gb),Rvwb bv
(Rvbv)
QE4 Which aspects of education are most important?
Avcbvi KvQ wkvi Kvb w`KwU ewk iyZc~Y?

No. HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
E4.1 Years of schooling zj hvevi mgq Kvj 1 2 3 4 9
E4.2 Type of school zji aib 1 2 3 4 9
E4.3 Having good teachers fvjv wkK 1 2 3 4 9
E4.4 Costs for education wkvi LiP 1 2 3 4 9
E4.5 Develop creativity mwkxj KvR Kivi gZvi Dbqb 1 2 3 4 9
E4.6 Acquisition of life skills Rxeb hvcbi Rb cqvRbxq
`Zv ARb
1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq(Gb), Rvwb bv
(Rvbv)
Annex 133
134 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
QE5 How important to work for you? / KvR Kiv Avcbvi KvQ Kb iyZc~Y ej gb nq ?

No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN
Rank
(1-3)

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv gvbymvi
ejyb (1-3)

E5.1 Provide income DcvRb Kivi Rb 1 2 3 4 9
E5.2 Provide opportunities
for personal
advancement
ewMZ DbwZi Rb 1 2 3 4 9
E5.3 Provide opportunities
to exercise power
gZvi eenvii Rb 1 2 3 4 9
E5.4 Provide additional
facilities
Abvb myweavi Rb 1 2 3 4 9
E5.5 Opportunity for
trainings/ further
studies
wewfb cwkY/ AviI
jLvcov Kivi Rb
1 2 3 4 9
E5.6 Opportunities to
network
AbK aibi gvbyli
mv_ hvMvhvM Rb
1 2 3 4 9
E5.7 Provide opportunities
to travel
gYi Rb 1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq (Gb), Rvwb bv
(Rvbv)
QE6 How important is traveling to you?
Avcbvi KvQ gYi GB w`Kjv KZUzKz iyZc~Y?

No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
E6.1 To learn more about
own country
wbRi `k mK AbK Rvbv
hvq
1 2 3 4 9
E6.2 To learn more about
foreign countries
Ab `k mK AbK Rvbv hvq 1 2 3 4 9
E6.3 To meet other people bvbv gvbyli mv_ `Lv nq 1 2 3 4 9
E6.4 To learn about other
cultures
Abvb mswZ mK Rvbv hvq 1 2 3 4 9
E6.5 To learn more about
other religions
Abvb ag mK Rvbv hvq 1 2 3 4 9
E6.6 To learn other
languages
Abvb fvlv mK Rvbv hvq 1 2 3 4 9


Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq(Gb), Rvwb bv
(Rvbv)
QE7 Media of learning about the state
Avwg GLb AvcbvK wKQy gvagi K_v ejev, Avcwb `qv Ki ejeb wK wbv Kvb gvagjvi gvag iv
mg RvbZ cvib?

No.
HI SI SUI HUI DKN

Ae wK Zb Gb Rvbv
E7.1 At school zj 1 2 3 4 9
E7.2 Reading newspapers Leii KvMR co 1 2 3 4 9
E7.3 Listening to radio iwWI b 1 2 3 4 9
E7.4 Watching news on TV wUwjwfkb Lei `L 1 2 3 4 9
E7.5 Reading websites wewfb IqemvBU co 1 2 3 4 9
E7.6 Talking to friends ez`i mv_ Avjvci
gvag
1 2 3 4 9
E7.7 At youth clubs hye msN 1 2 3 4 9
E7.8 Any other clubs Ab Kvb Kve 1 2 3 4 9
E7.9 From political parties ivRbwZK `jjvi gvag 1 2 3 4 9

Rating: highly important (HI), somewhat important (SI), somewhat unimportant (SUI), highly unimportant
(HUI), do not know (DKN)
AbK ewk iyZc~Y (Ae), wKQzUv iyZc~Y (wK), Zgb iyZc~Y bq (Zb), GK`g iyZc~Y bq(Gb),Rvwb bv (Rvbv)
QE8 Can you accept the following issues of social change?
Avwg GLb AvcbvK wKQy welqi K_v ejev, wbPi welqMyjvK Avcwb KZUv gb wbZ cvib?

No. HA MA SA HIA DNK

cygvcv Agcv wKgvcv Ggvcvbv Rvbv
E8.1 Gender equality bvix-cyili mgghv`v 1 2 3 4 9
E8.2 Women who are
working
bvix`i KvR Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
E8.3 Friendship with
opposite gender
Ab wji KviI mv_
ezZ Kiv
1 2 3 4 9
E8.4 Marriage without
consent of parents
evev-gvi AmwZZ weq 1 2 3 4 9
E8.5 Marriage at a later age `wiZ weq Kiv 1 2 3 4 9
E8.6 Family Planning cwievi cwiKbv 1 2 3 4 9
E8.7 Divorce weevn weQ` 1 2 3 4 9
E8.8 Study abroad `ki evBi jLvcov 1 2 3 4 9
E8.9 Work abroad `ki evBi KvR KiZ
hvIqv
1 2 3 4 9
Rating: Highly acceptable (HA), mostly acceptable (MA) Somewhat Acceptable (SA), highly in-acceptable
(HNA) dont know (DKN)
cyivcywi gvbZ cvwi (cygvcv), AbKvsk gvbZ cvwi (Agcv), wKQyUv gvbZ cvwi (wKgvcv), GK`g gvbZ cvwi bv
(Ggvcvbv, Rvwb bv (Rvbv)|
Annex 135
136 BANGLADESH YOUTH SURVEY 2011
of higher education in Dhaka, Bangladesh. The University, established in 2001, has a goal to provide a high
quality, broad-based education with a focus on professional development to equip students with the
knowledge and skills necessary for leading the country in its quest for development.
The mission of the University - to promote national development process through the creation of a centre
of excellence in higher education that is responsive to societys needs is consistent with the long-term
development objectives of its sponsoring institution, BRAC.
BRAC University
66 Mohakhali C/A,Dhaka1212
www.bracuniversity.ac.bd
Tel:+88028824051
Fax:+88028810383
Institute of Governance Studies
SK Center (5th - 7th Floor). GP. JA-4, TB Gate,
Mohakhali, Dhaka 1212, Bangladesh
Tel.+8801199810380,+88028810306, 8810320,8810326
Fax:+88028832542
Website:www.igs-bracu.ac.bd

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